a A bowl of warm white beans screams comfort to me. I start by gently blanching garlic in extra virgin olive oil until fragrant, then add the beans and whatever flavors I’m craving—chili, herbs, or something spicy like capers. What I eat with beans depends on my mood: braised rabbit, chicken, fried whole fish, or grilled vegetables. The sauce here makes a bold and fiery dressing with roasted shallots.
White beans with roasted shallots, capers and mint sauce
Prepare 15 minutes
cook 30 minutes
4 large pieces (or 6 mediumleekClean it and cut it in half
3 tablespoons extra virgin olive oilPlus more for brushing teeth
4 garlic clovespeeled and chopped
2 x 400 g cansbutter beansdrain and rinse
1 red pepper
Salt and Pepper
for the sauce
½ red onionsection
4 tablespoons of red wine vinegar
a bunch of mint
1 tablespoon grave
6 tablespoons Extra virgin olive oil
Bring a deep saucepan of salted water to a boil and simmer the shallots for three to four minutes, until they have softened through the core (check with a sharp knife) but still hold their shape so they can survive the charcoal grill later. Take it out and let it cool down.
Meanwhile, heat oil in a medium skillet over low heat, add garlic and sauté slightly, stirring constantly, until color begins around edges, 5 to 6 minutes. Add the beans, with a generous splash of water and seasoning to taste, and cook for five minutes to heat through, gently pressing some of the beans onto the edge of the pan to thaw them completely.
Start the sauce by placing the onions in a medium bowl and stirring in the vinegar, then set aside to give the onions time to relax in the vinegar.
Heat a frying pan on high and place the chili in the corner until it smokes. Brush the cooked shallots with a little oil and roast alongside the chili, flipping after 2-3 minutes once they are well marked with streaks of charcoal. When the leeks are cooked and charred enough, transfer them to a plate and keep them warm. Don’t worry if some crumble – they’ll still be delicious. Continue to cook the chili until lightly charred and soft all the time.
Cut the stalk off the chili, then roughly chop the meat. Pick the mint leaves from the stems, place them on the board with the chilies and capers and chop them forcefully until the mint breaks into small pieces. Scrape the onion peel, season, then add the oil. Taste to taste, adding salt and more vinegar to taste. It should be fresh, crunchy, and light in color with a little heat. (If you have leftover lemon or orange in your fruit bowl, you can add the peel.)
Heat the beans and distribute them on heated plates. Arrange the shallots on top with tongs, then pour the sauce over and serve.
These beans make a great weeknight meal on their own, but they’re also delicious as an accompaniment to pork or lamb steak.