Smoky Butter Beans

Smoky Butter Beans

This is one of those store cupboard recipes that's easy to whip up mid-week. Butter beans have a creamier and meatier texture than other white beans, and they hold their shape better in longer cooking, making them perfect for slow-cooked stews. What gives this dish its unique favour is the paprika, which adds a richness and earthiness. Either sprinkle crumbled feta on top of this dish or keep it plain, as it’s just as delicious without. Serve warm or at room temperature.
Photography: KRIS KIRKHAM
4 as part of a mezze, or 2–3 as a main course
Total Time
1 Hour 10 Minutes
3 tbsp of vegetable oil
1 small onion, finely chopped (around 125g)
2 garlic cloves, crushed
1 x 400g can of chopped plum tomatoes
1 tsp of sugar
1 ½ tsp of dried oregano
1½ tsp of sweet paprika
½ tsp of smoked paprika
¼ tsp of ground cinnamon
2 x 400g cans of butter beans, drained and rinsed
200ml of just-boiled water
3 tbsp of extra virgin olive oil
1 tbsp of finely chopped dill, plus more to serve
1 tbsp of finely chopped parsley leaves, plus more to serve
100g of crumbled feta cheese (optional)
Salt & black pepper
Step 1

Heat the vegetable oil in a large saucepan. Add the onion and gently fry over a medium heat for 12-15 minutes until soft. Add the garlic and cook for another few minutes, then add the tomatoes, sugar, oregano, both types of paprika, the cinnamon, 1 teaspoon of salt and a generous grind of black pepper. Cover and simmer for 15 minutes.

Step 2

Add the beans to the tomato sauce with the measured hot water and another ½ teaspoon of salt. Cover and cook over a low heat for 30 minutes.

Step 3

Stir in the extra virgin olive oil and herbs and cook for a final 5 minutes. Taste, adjust the seasoning and sprinkle over more herbs, with crumbled feta if you fancy it, just before serving.

Ripe Figs by Yasmin Khan (Bloomsbury Publishing, £26) is out now. Photography by Kris Kirkham.

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