White Bean & Tomato Stew
Stews are prized for being hearty and comforting, and our White Bean & Tomato Stew is both. The tomatoes, vegetable stock and beans cook until the beans are tender and the tomatoes start to caramelize. Mashing some of the beans thickens the stew and gives it an irresistibly creamy texture.
At the same time, this vegetarian stew is fresh and bright, thanks to the garlic, thyme, rosemary and red pepper added during the last hour in the slow cooker so they don’t lose their vibrant flavor. Then we top it with parsley for an extra dose of freshness and nutty Parmesan to add a layer of richness and depth. Serving it with Italian bread or, better yet, a grilled cheese sandwich, is a must.
4 to 6 servings
Preparation time: 20 minutes
Cook time: 6 ½ hours
1 pound dried great northern beans, rinsed and sorted
1 28-ounce can San Marzano tomatoes and their juices
2 cups vegetable stock
½ teaspoon kosher salt, plus more to taste
¼ cup extra virgin olive oil
1 medium yellow onion, diced
2 celery stalks, diced
6 garlic cloves, minced
1 teaspoon chopped fresh thyme leaves
½ teaspoon chopped fresh rosemary leaves
½ teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes
¼ cup dry white wine
Black pepper, to taste
½ cup grated Parmesan
½ cup parsley leaves, chopped
L&B Italian Round Artisan Bread, for serving
- Place the rinsed beans in a large bowl and cover them with 2 inches of water. Cover the bowl with plastic wrap and soak overnight.
- The next day, pour the tomatoes and their juices into a slow cooker. Using a potato masher, crush the tomatoes into bite-size pieces.
- Strain the beans and stir them into the slow cooker. Pour in the vegetable stock, then stir in ½ teaspoon salt. Cover and cook on high for 5 hours.
- Heat the olive oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Add the onions and a pinch of salt, then sauté until translucent, about 3 minutes. Add the celery and cook until the onions are golden, 8 to 10 minutes. Stir in the garlic, thyme, rosemary and crushed red pepper, and cook for 2 minutes. Stir in the white wine and cook until reduced, about 2 minutes.
- After the beans have cooked for 5 hours, remove and mash about ½ cup of the beans, then return to the slow cooker. Transfer the onion mixture to the slow cooker and stir to combine. Cover and continue to cook until the beans are cooked through, about 1 hour more.
- Season the stew with salt and black pepper. Divide among serving bowls, top with grated Parmesan cheese and chopped parsley leaves. Serve with bread and enjoy!