Barbunya for Quarantine

Stuck at home with a pantry full of dried beans? Me, too. I don’t regularly prepare cranberry beans, or in Turkish, barbunya, as they lose their pretty speckle after cooking, which, I have to admit, I’ve always found a little disappointing! BUT I’m trying to use things I have in-house during coronavirus quarantine – and this recipe, which also calls for plenty of carrots (check!), can be served hot or cold, making it ideal for leftovers.

dried barbunya

Ingredients

  • 2 cups dried cranberry beans
  • 1 large yellow onion, chopped
  • 6 carrots, chopped
  • 2 medium tomatoes, peeled/diced + 1 tbsp tomato paste OR 1 14-oz can diced tomatoes + 1 tbspn tomato paste (note:  I was out of tomato paste when I made this, so you’ll note below in the photo that I don’t have a more traditional thicker tomato-y juice)
  • 3 tbspns olive oil
  • 1 ½ cups hot water
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • Italian parsley and/or lemon for garnish

Instructions

  1. soak beans overnight in a large pot
  2. the next day, change water, bring to a boil
  3. partially cover and simmer for ~30 minutes (timing may vary – just keep in mind that you don’t want mushy beans, but at the same time you don’t want hard beans either…as my husband likes to say, the truth is usually somewhere in between…)
  4. drain and rinse the cooked beans, set aside
  5. in the same large pot, sauté the onion in olive oil on medium heat for 2-3 minutes, until they’re on the verge of softening
  6. add the chopped carrots, continue to sauté for another 3-4 minutes (if your chopped carrots are thicker, add an extra minute or so)
  7. add tomato/tomato paste/canned tomato, mix well
  8. season with salt and pepper
  9. add beans, mix well
  10. add hot water, mix well, and bring to a boil
  11. simmer pot for 30-40 minutes
  12. add additional salt and pepper, if desired, and serve warm over pilaf or as a cold side with squeezed lemon

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