Greek cuisine is full of vegetarian main options and many of those being main courses that are filling, nutritious and delicious. It’s Spring and herbs are abundant at the markets and in some of your herb gardens. The main ingredient of this one-pot dish are flat, runner or pole beans. Fassolakia.
These flat beans are becoming more and more available and yes, they taste differently than your usual bean found in the market. They are tender and sweeter and I absolutely love this dish. My family also makes this dish with veal and today, as a vegetarian main course. Both are delicious and you get to decide which version you would like to cook for your family.
The other aspects of this dish that make it delicious are lots of onions and lots of fresh herbs. This dish celebrates herbs….you get parsley, you get dill and some mint to round out the flavours.
Fassolakia Ladera (Φασολάκια λαδερά)
1 kg. (or 2.2lbs.) of fassolakia (runner bean), ends snapped off
1/2 cup olive oil
3 medium onions, sliced
5 cloves of garlic, sliced
1/2 bunch of parsley, chopped
4 Tbsp. of chopped fresh mint
1/2 cup fresh dill, chopped
3 large ripe tomatoes, passed through a box grater, skins discarded (or approx. 1 cup of tomatoes puree)
4-5 whole allspice berries
1 cup of hot water
6 large potatoes, peeled and halved
salt and pepper to taste
- In a large pot over medium heat, add your olive oil, onions and garlic and a pinch of salt. Stir to coat and cover. Cook for about 5-7 minutes or until the onions have softened. Now add the grated tomatoes and allspice berries and simmer for another 5 minutes.
- Now add the beans (ends snapped-off), your herbs (dill, parsley and mint), the potatoes and 1 cup of hot water. Bring to a boil and then reduce to a simmer. Season with some salt and pepper and cover. Simmer for about 45 minutes or until the beans are tender and the potatoes have cooked. Adjust seasoning with salt and pepper.
- Serve with some good crusty bread and Feta cheese on the side.
- A Greek rose wine is excellent with this dish. Try the Ligas Rose from Giannitsa (Pella), Makedonia.
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