This Deliciously Ella bean stew is the perfect winter-warmer if you’re looking for a better-for-you option. With protein-packed beans, this meatless stew is a great veggie alternative if you’re cooking for vegetarian friends or if you’re on a vegetarian diet yourself. This bean stew recipe also has plenty of veg to get your 5-a-day intake up. The tomatoes in this Deliciously Ella recipe contain vitamin C, a powerful ally when you’re trying to keep colds and flu at bay. To make this bean stew, you’ll need to let the tomatoes, celery, onion and red peppers bubble away with the spices for half an hour, and then all you need to do is add the beans when you’re ready to eat – they’ll need 10 minutes to cook with the tomato mixture. Ella says: ‘As soon as autumn arrives and the weather cools down, I start making this all the time. It’s a warming, hearty dish that tastes lovely served on a hot bed of brown rice or quinoa with a big dollop of Mango Salsa on top. I love the mix of black, butter and cannellini beans; they create such a fantastic mix of textures that satisfies me every time. This is very freezable, so you can make a larger quantity and keep the rest to enjoy as a healthy ready meal for when you’re busy. I never used to eat much onion, as it didn’t agree with me, but I’ve been slowly reintroducing it to my diet… which is why you’re now seeing more of it, too. If you’re not an onion person, feel free to leave it out though.’
- Large glug of olive oil
- 2 celery sticks, finely chopped
- 1 medium onion, finely chopped (optional)
- salt and pepper
- 4 garlic cloves, finely chopped
- 2 red chillies, deseeded and finely chopped
- 400g can of chopped tomatoes
- 4 tablespoons tomato purée
- 2 red peppers, finely chopped
- 400g can each of butter beans, black beans and cannellini beans, drained and rinsed
- large handful of fresh coriander
Heat the oil in a large saucepan over a medium heat. Add the celery and onion (if using) with lots of salt and pepper, then stir. Cook until the celery is turning translucent, then add the garlic and chillies and cook for a minute, stirring so that nothing catches.
Add the canned tomatoes, tomato purée, red peppers and 350ml of water and let it bubble for about 30 minutes, stirring to break down the tomatoes now and then, until the sauce is starting to reduce and the peppers are soft.Once you’re ready to eat, add the beans. They’ll need about 10 minutes. When they’ve had that, turn the heat off and let cool slightly.
Serve in bowls with some Mango Salsa mixed through each serving, topped with a sprinkling of coriander.