I am a huge fan of Meera Sodha’s recipes, and this Butter Beans with Salsa Verde is another delicious recipe of hers. It first appeared in the Guardian Feast, a weekly food magazine in the UK that I wish I could get my hands on more often. How often I get to read one all depends on who comes to Cape Town, bringing a few copies in their suitcase. But since it is 2020, that has not happened this year. Luckily most of the recipes are available online once published so it’s a quick click when I have seen a recipe I like on either Meera or the Feast’s instagram accounts.
The Butter Beans with Salsa Verde is a lovely, light recipe for the summer days ahead. Serve it with the freshest sourdough to mop up the juices (toast it for more texture), add a chilled, crisp glass of wine and you have a winner on your hands. Salsa Verde is an uncooked, green sauce with its origins in Italy and France. As Meera writes, “if you’ve not encountered it before, is one of Italy’s finest sauces, usually made with sweet herbs and olive oil, which are given a smack around the chops with garlic, vinegar and pickled capers. It is in my opinion, a good match for the sleepy, creamy butter bean.”
I did not make any changes to the recipe as I thought it is pretty much as I would make it. I do suggest though that you make the sauce by hand and chop it with a knife. I feel the coarser texture of the sauce adds much more flavour and texture than one made in a food processor.
The images in this post have been shot on Arctic Salt, one of the backgrounds from my newly launched Heinstirred Collection, available for sale online at shop.heinstirred.com. Do you have a look around, your favourite new surface may be just a click away.
I hope you enjoy this recipe for Butter Beans with Salsa Verde and that it will become a family favourite. If you’ve made the recipe share it with me by tagging @heinstirred on Instagram or Facebook with the hashtag #heinstirred. It is always a treat to see the recipes made and enjoyed.
Butter Beans in Salsa Verde
- 5¼ tbsp 20g picked flat-leaf parsley
- 3¾ tbsp 20g picked basil leaves
- 3¾ tbsp 20g picked mint leaves (ie, from around 10 sprigs)
- 3 tbsp capers drained
- 1 tbsp red-wine vinegar
- 2 garlic cloves peeled and finely sliced
- 75 ml olive oil 5 tbsp, plus 2 tbsp extra for cooking the beans
- 2 x 400g tins butterbeans not drained
- 1 onion peeled and finely chopped
- 1 red chilli optional
- ¾ tsp fine sea salt or to taste
- Put all the herbs on a large chopping board and finely chop with the capers and one of the garlic cloves, then transfer to a bowl, stir in the vinegar and the olive oil, and put to one side
- Drain away about three tablespoons of the liquid from one of the tins of butter beans, but leave the other one as it is
- Put two tablespoons of oil in a large frying pan over a medium heat and, once hot, add the onion and cook, stirring occasionally, for eight minutes, until really soft and starting to turn golden
- Add the second garlic clove and the chilli, cook, stirring, for a couple of minutes, then tip in the butter beans and all their remaining liquid
- Simmer for about 10 minutes, until the beans are soft and the stock has reduced a little, then stir in the salsa verde and salt to taste
- Take off the heat and serve at once with toasted ciabatta to mop up the juices