Gigantes plaki

Slow-cooked butterbeans, tomatoes, Spanish onions, garlic and fresh oregano. This really is too good.

Serve simply with good crusty wholegrain bread to mop up the vibrant, fragrant, sweet, tomatoey juices. You can slow-cook it to intensify the flavours or cheat a bit by sautéing the onions, garlic and tomatoes first.

Prep time: 10 mins
Cook time: 90 mins
Servings: 4
Servings: 4

Ingredients

  • 1.5 Spanish onions, peeled and thinly sliced into rounds
  • 2 fat cloves of garlic finely chopped (I used one but go by personal taste)
  • 2 tins of quality plum tomatoes
  • 2 tablespoons of tomato purée
  • 1 heaped teaspoon of sugar
  • small bunch of fresh oregano, chopped – or use dried if no fresh
  • sea salt
  • 2 tins of butter beans, drained
  • 10 baby tomatoes
  • plenty of extra virgin olive oil

Instructions

Heat the oven to 190 degrees

Into a rectangular oven dish pour some olive oil to coat the base then add a layer of sliced onion and scatter the garlic over too.

Now open the tins of tomatoes and while still in the tin chop them with a long sharp knife before pouring one tin all over the onion and garlic layer. Sprinkle on half the sugar, a generous amount of salt, some oregano and glug some olive oil over. Dot half the tomato purée all over without spreading.

Add one tin of the beans before repeating the first layer of onions, tomatoes, sugar, salt, oregano and tomato purée. Then add the next tin of beans and place the halved baby tomatoes in gaps all over the top.

Finish with a good glug of olive oil all over again and a bit more salt.

Bake for 90 mins covered in foil but after 15 mins turn the oven down to 150 degrees. Check at 45 mins to see how it’s getting on. Serve sprinkled with more fresh oregano.

Gigantes plaki Greek beans recipe

Nutrition Info

Beans

Though the term “superfood” is applied to many foods these days, beans really may be deserving of the title. They are technically a starchy vegetable packed with protein, low in fat and sugars – this can aid weight-loss as they keep us feeling fuller for longer. It has been proven that beans also decrease the risk of type 2 diabetes due to their low glycaemic index, thereby improving lipid and glycaemic control in diabetics. Their most famous attribute is the link between their consumption and lower levels of cholesterol which in turn reduces the risk of developing chronic conditions such as heart disease.

Beans, in general, are one of the only plant foods that provide a significant amount of the amino acid lysine, in addition to a wide range of antioxidants. It’s important to get a variety of beans and legumes as each contain different and varying micronutrients; cannellini beans have more calcium; pinto beans score high in folate; and aduki beans, chickpeas, and butter beans are particularly high in iron. Most are packed with resistant starch, adukis are high in potassium, and red and black varieties are rich in disease-fighting antioxidants.

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Portion Guidelines

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