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Gigante Beans with Feta and Bitter Greens


Creamy, hearty gigante beans are substantial enough to serve as a main course. Dandelion greens, most similar to the greens used in Greece, need to be blanched to tenderize their stalks and remove the chewy and bitter qualities. (You can also use blanched Swiss chard or chicory.)

  • Prep:
  • Total Time:
  • Servings: 4

Photography: Johnny Miller

Source: Martha Stewart Living, September 2011


  • 2 tablespoons plus 1 teaspoon extra-virgin olive oil
  • 2 cups finely chopped onion
  • 2 garlic cloves, thinly sliced
  • 2 tablespoons tomato paste
  • 8 ounces dried gigante beans, soaked in water overnight
  • 1 pound blanched tomatoes, peeled and finely chopped (1 1/2 cups)
  • 4 1/2 cups water
  • 1 bunch (about 6 ounces) dandelion greens, ends trimmed, cut into 3-inch pieces
  • 1 tablespoon red-wine vinegar
  • Coarse salt
  • 1/2 cup reduced-fat feta cheese, crumbled (3 ounces)
  • 3 tablespoons coarsely chopped fresh dill


  1. Heat 1 tablespoon oil in a medium pot over medium heat. Cook onion until soft, 8 to 10 minutes. Add garlic and tomato paste. Cook until fragrant, 2 to 3 minutes.

  2. Drain beans, and add to pot. Add tomatoes and water. Bring to a boil. Reduce heat, and just barely simmer, partially covered, until beans are tender, about 3 hours.

  3. Meanwhile, prepare an ice-water bath. Bring a medium pot of water to a boil. Blanch dandelion greens until tender and no longer bitter, about 9 minutes. Transfer to ice-water bath using a slotted spoon.

  4. Once beans are tender, add vinegar and 1 teaspoon salt. Drain dandelion greens, and add to pot. Rewarm if needed.

  5. Divide beans among 4 bowls, and top with feta and dill. Drizzle each with 1 teaspoon oil.

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