Wednesday, 16 July 2014

Amanda's Italian Beans with Meatballs (optional)

3 tbsp olive oil
4 celery sticks, roughly diced
4 medium carrots, roughly diced
3 leeks,trimmed, washed and sliced
2 garlic cloves,crushed
100ml white wine
2 x 400g cans chopped tomatoes
Grated zest and juice of 1 lemon
About 700ml vegetable stock, hot
410g borlotti beans,drained and rinsed
410g  cannellini beans, drained and rinsed

1/12 cups frozen green beans
Small handful fresh oregano or fresh thyme,leaves picked and chopped, plus extra whole leaves to garnish

1.First cook the dried beans as per packet until just tender,drain
2. Heat the oil in a large casserole or saucepan over a medium heat. Add the celery and carrots and cook, stirring, for 7-8 minutes. Add the leeks, cook for 3-4 minutes, then stir in the garlic and wine. Let the wine cook out and reduce for a few minutes.
3.Tip in the tomatoes and lemon zest and season well. Add the stock, bring to the boil, then simmer fairly rapidly for 30-35 minutes, stirring occasionally or until the vegetables are just tender and the liquid has reduced and thickened.( add meatballs now see note at bottom,optional)
4. Stir in the cooked  beans (add a dash of hot water, if necessary) and cook for 5 minutes. Remove from the heat and stir in the oregano or thyme and the lemon juice. It’s worth re-checking the seasoning now. Spoon the casserole into bowls and garnish with fresh oregano or thyme leaves.

NOTE: I also add frozen green beans to mine when I make it as well (add them when adding the lemon juice in step 3)
To add meatballs to this recipe at step 3 add the meatballs,
to make meatballs  I used about a 1/4 kg good lean topside beef mince , about the same in breadcrumbs and a teaspoon of Italian herbs and a few tablespoons of water  mix well and make into teaspoon size meatballs and add to the sauce raw... by the time the sauce reduces the meatballs will be cooked and you can add your beans, then cook until your frozen green beans are tender if you want to add those as well,this is yum

Amanda's Italian Beans with meatballs

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