Saturday, 20 April 2013

Helda Bean Fassoulakia- vegan

Shown here with potato and pumpkin latkes, on a wonderfully kitsch plate we got in a supermarket on Corfu...

Now that it's the season for helda- or flat- beans from Spain, we thought we'd rewrite this recipe which formed part of a longer  post a couple of years or so ago. Helda beans grow best in Southern Europe, but can be grown like runner beans in the UK in a good Summer. Fassoulakia is a traditional Greek vegetable dish usually made with green beans. (Fassoulia, a similar dish, is made with butter beans.) When I lived on Crete this used to be a staple for me. Then I discovered tender and tasty Spanish helda beans and decided that they would make the perfect fassoulakia; my little twist on the Greek tradition. The secret is to braise the beans long and slow in minimal liquid so that they become really tender and succulent.

Serves 4-6:
3 packets helda beans- about 300g
a tin of chopped tomatoes (cooked fresh cherry tomatoes would have been better, but I was in a hurry!)
extra-virgin olive oil
1/2- 1 tab dried basil
1/2 tsp compound hing (asafoetida)
seasalt and coarse black pepper to taste
  • Put the prepared beans in a pan and gently cook in a tablespoon or so of olive oil for a few minutes, stirring constantly.
  • Add the seasonings, a couple of tablespoons of water, put the lid on the pan, turn the heat right down and cook until they are starting to get tender.
  • Stir in the chopped tomatoes and simmer very gently for a further 5-10 mins, or until beans are thoroughly cooked.
  • Adjust the seasonings if necessary.

This recipe goes to the "Flavours of Greece" event by Simply Food, hosted by Seduce your Tastebuds; links below:




1 comment:

  1. love latkes. always make it with potatoes and beans looks delicious.

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