Provenҫal Bean Stew

Provenҫal Bean Stew

I love recipes that have multiple uses. This is one of those recipes. This recipe from my “1000 Vegetarian Recipes from Around the World” cookbook was super tasty and filling as a main dish. It also worked very well for one of my favorite uses of leftovers…spaghetti topping. I learned that trick from my mom when I was very small. She used to use leftover chili to top spaghetti. Now I do the same thing sometimes, using chili and other tomato or cream based soups (the tomato-based soups work better, in my opinion) in the same fashion. I think the next time I make this I’m going to use different kinds of beans. I may even use three cans of different beans to give a even more variety. I can see pinto beans, navy beans, and kidney beans working well together. Black beans too. Mmmm. Maybe I’ll make it a FOUR bean stew! My goodness! Do I dare? (I do). Also, more olives are DEFINITELY in order for this. Mainly because I totally love kalamata olives more than anything else. By the way, please pardon my finger in the photo to the left. I tend to make dinner later rather than earlier and so I miss out on really good light for my photos. The alternative is holding the dish closer to the mellow overhead kitchen light. I do what I can with what I have.

Provenҫal Bean Stew
2 15-oz. cans pinto beans, drained and rinsed
2 tablespoons olive oil
2 onions, sliced
2 garlic cloves, finely chopped
1 red bell pepper, seeded and sliced
1 yellow bell pepper, seeded and sliced
2 cups canned chopped tomatoes
2 tablespoons tomato paste
1 tablespoon fresh torn basil leaves
1 teaspoon dried thyme
1 teaspoon dried rosemary
1 bay leaf
salt and pepper, to taste
1/2 cup black olives, pitted and halved
2 tablespoons dried parsley

1. Heat the olive oil in a heavy pot.
2. Add the onions and cook, stirring, 5 minutes.
3. Add the garlic and bell peppers and cook, stirring frequently, 10 minutes.
4. Add the tomatoes, tomato paste, basil, thyme, rosemary, bay leaf, and beans. Season with salt and pepper.
5. Cover and simmer 30-40 minutes.
6. Add the olives and dried parsley and simmer 5 minutes more.
7. Serve immediately.

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