Gluten-free Greek Baked Giant Butter Beans In Tomato Sauce (Gigandes/ Γιγαντες)
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Pulses are eaten a lot in Greece, and 'Gigandes' or baked giant butter beans, are one of the most popular dishes.
This is a wonderfully healthy and comforting plant powered dish best served with a side of feta cheese and gluten-free bread to mop up the rich sauce.
2 x cans butter/lima beans, (sub cannellini beans) drained and rinsed
400g can chopped tomatoes
3 Tbsp Greek olive oil
1 red onion, diced
2 medium carrots, peeled and sliced
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 bay leaf
1 Tbsp dill, roughly chopped
½ tsp Greek oregano
1 Tbsp tomato concentrate paste
Lemon zest, of 1 lemon
1 can full of water, from the chopped tomato can
1 vegetable stock cube
50ml red wine (optional)
Sea salt and pepper, to taste
2 spring onions, finely chopped
½ tsp chili flakes (optional)
Preheat the oven to 180ºC.
Over medium heat, place a large pot with 3 Tbsp olive oil.
Add the onion and carrots, and sauté. Once the onions have softened, add in the garlic, bay leaf and tomato paste. Give it a stir.
If using red wine, add this in now and wait for the alcohol to evaporate.
Add the chopped tomatoes, fill the empty can with water and add this too the pot along with the oregano, dill, lemon zest, stock cube, salt, pepper and butter beans. Give it another stir and let simmer for a few minutes.
Remove the pot from the heat and transfer the contents to an ovenproof baking dish.
Sprinkle the spring onions over it, cover with aluminium foil and bake for 30 minutes covered and another 15 minutes uncovered.
SERVE THIS WITH.
Butter beans - also known as lima beans, are a major source of protein, fibre, iron and packed full of B vitamins. They are low in fat and calories and contain valuable antioxidants. (Source)
Greek extra virgin olive oil - specifically Greek oil, has the lowest acidity (approximately 0.5%) and is packed with essential vitamins and minerals. Benefits may include anti-inflammatory properties, lowering cholesterol and blood pressure and improves bone calcification. (Source)
Red onion - nutrient dense, meaning they're low in calories but high in vitamins and minerals. Red onions are rich in anthocyanin, which are powerful plant pigments that may protect against heart disease, certain cancers and diabetes. (Source)
Carrots - are a great source of many plant compounds, especially carotenoids, such as beta carotene and lutein, which is important for eye health. (Source)
Garlic - contains antioxidants that protect against cell damage and ageing, helps improve blood pressure, cholesterol and bone health. (Source)
Oregano - (it must be Greek oregano, as there is a difference in flavour) Oregano is high in antioxidants, it can help prevent damage by neutralising disease-causing free radicals, and contains certain compounds that have potent antibacterial properties. (Source)
Lemon - high in heart-healthy vitamin C and several beneficial plant compounds that may lower cholesterol. (Source)
Spring onions / scallions - are an excellent source of vitamin C and calcium. They are also a good source of dietary fibre, vitamins and minerals. (Source)
HAVE YOU MADE THIS?
Many of my recipes call for Greek products like Greek extra virgin olive oil, Greek honey or Greek oregano. It is not mandatory for it to be Greek in order to make the recipe, you are more than welcome to use a good quality alternative; just keep in mind if you are after the authentic flavours of Greece these details do make all the difference in Greek cuisine. You can shop these ingredients here.
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Disclaimer: None of the health benefits listed are intended to diagnose or treat any pre-existing health conditions. Always consult a health care practitioner before making any health decisions. The benefits listed are from my own research and personal interest, and encourage you to follow the Source and do further research.