I have been on the hunt for dry cannellini beans for weeks now but with no luck. Even the canned ones have been hard to come by although I did eventually find those. I normally don't mind canned beans as a great shortcut but I find that white beans remain a little too tough from a can. But, we all need to make do these days so I found a way to make the canned version work.
Cooking them for a while in a tomato and stock mixture not only softens them the right amount but also adds great flavor. The fresh thyme and bit of heat from red pepper flakes give this dish complexity and there's no shortage of cheesy goodness. It's almost like a great pasta bake but with beans. Healthy food, comfort food, good food. Enjoy!
Yield: 6 Servings
Tomato and Cheese Bean Bake
Prep time: 15 MCook time: 35 MTotal time: 50 M
Recipe for white beans cooked in tomato and chicken stock, then baked with Parmesan and mozzarella cheese.
- 1 Tablespoon olive oil
- 1 Small onion, peeled and diced
- 1/2 Cup tomato sauce or 1/4 cup tomato paste
- 2 Cans (approx. 15 oz. each) cannellini beans, rinsed and drained
- 3/4 Cup chicken or vegetable stock
- 1/4 Cup grated Parmesan or Romano cheese
- 1 Cup shredded mozzarella cheese
- 1 Teaspoon fresh thyme leaves
- Salt and pepper to taste
- Red pepper flakes, to taste
- Pre-heat the oven to 400 degrees.
- Add the olive oil and onion to a large skillet or cast iron pan and saute until translucent. Stir in the tomato sauce or paste, the beans and stock. Cook on medium low heat, stirring often, for about 10 minutes. Season with the thyme leaves, salt, pepper and red pepper flakes.
- Stir in the Parmesan cheese and 1/4 cup of the mozzarella cheese. Top with the remaining mozzarella cheese and bake for 20 minutes or until the cheese has melted. Serve warm with crusty bread.
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