Winter has decided to wrap her icy fingers around Florida (and the rest of the country) for what I hope, is the last time. Enough with the cold already!
Cold weather means comfort foods. Hearty, stick to your ribs casseroles, flavorful soups & stews and crock pots full of all manner of tasty things. It also means I can run my oven as much as I want! When it’s 100 degrees outside, the last thing I want to do is stand in front of a blazing oven. So, I take advantage of the cold weather to fire it up and enjoy the extra heat.
Since our temperatures dipped down into the low 30’s (hush, this is sub-tropical Florida, 30 is COLD), I decided to make my favorite bean casserole. It is so easy. Minimum effort for maximum flavor. It uses cannellini beans. These beans are a good for you inclusion to your diet. They are high in magnesium, fiber, iron, folate and a good source of protein. If you can’t find cannellini bean, you can substitute great northern or any white bean.
On with the show –
Gather all your ingredients. Get out a cutting board and knife, so you can dice up all those veggies. Did you know that the celery, onion and carrot mix is called a mirepoix? You do now! Not only do we provide good eats, you get to learn new things, too.
Do you see that? Wait, here it is –
There she is. Kitchen kitty is making sure I do this right. Anyhow, onward. Pre-heat the oven to 400º. Get out your dutch oven. Now, lets dice up some mirepoix. Do the celery
The carrots – which btw – I don’t peel. I use organic, so it’s wash, dry and eat.
Dice up some onion. You’ll need a cup of each. Oh, and dice up 3 tablespoons of parsley.
Put your pot of the stove, over medium – high heat and add 2 tablespoons of olive oil. Dump in the mirepoix.
Cover the pot and cook for about 8 minutes, stirring occasionally, until the veggies are soft. Turn the heat off and add in the white wine vinegar, scraping up the browned bits off the bottom.
Now, dump in 2 cans of cannellini beans with their juices. Add in the chopped parsley, thyme and some salt & pepper. Give it a stir.
Add in 1/2 cup of shredded cheese. I used Boars Head Gouda. You can use whatever vegetarian friendly cheese that you like or can find.
In a large measuring cup or small bowl, add 1 cup of panko bread crumbs, the remaining parsley, cheese and tablespoon of olive oil.
And mix it well.
Spread the crumb topping in an even layer over the top of the casserole.
Place it in the oven and bake for 20 to 30 minutes. When it’s all bubbly and the crumb top is golden, you are ready to pull it out of the oven.
Let it rest for 5 minutes to let that bubbling, bean brew settle down. Serve it up with a nice crusty bread or a focaccia. We had a whole wheat focaccia. Yum!
- 2 – 19 oz cans cannellini beans
- 1 teaspoon dried thyme
- 3 Tbs. chopped fresh parsley, divided
- 1 cup onion, diced
- 1 cup diced celery
- 1 cups diced carrots
- 3 Tbs. olive oil, divided
- 1 tsp. white wine vinegar
- ¾ cup coarsely grated Gouda cheese, divided
- 1 cup plain panko breadcrumbs
- salt & pepper to taste
- Preheat oven to 400°F.
- Heat 2 Tbs. oil in Dutch oven over medium-high heat. Add the diced carrots, celery and onion, and cook, covered, 6 to 8 minutes, or until onion is soft, stirring occasionally. Remove pot from heat, and stir in the white wine vinegar, using a spatula to scrape up any browned bits stuck to bottom of pot. Add beans with juices, chopped thyme, chopped parsley, ½ cup shredded cheese, salt & pepper. Stir well to combine.
- Combine breadcrumbs, remaining 1 Tbs. chopped parsley, and remaining ¼ cup shredded cheese in small bowl. Drizzle remaining 1 Tbs. oil into crumb mixture, and combine to moisten breadcrumbs. Spread breadcrumb mixture over bean mixture. Bake gratin, uncovered, 30 minutes, or until casserole is bubbly and the top is browned. Cool 5 minutes. Serve.
- Makes six generous servings.
- Adapted from Vegetarian Times Jan/Feb 2011