Beans and pulses as a staple of the Mediterranean diet which is partly why it is such a healthy way of eating. This simple recipe for black eyed beans with spinach and fennel is tasty, healthy and vegetarian too, oh, and it’s Greek as well so that makes it even better in my book!
When people think of Greek food they very often think of heavy dishes like the moussaka or pastitsio they are served in tavernas on holiday. Those type of dishes are just part of the story, local people tend to eat a lot of vegetables, much more so than meat, and beans and pulses feature in a lot of traditional dishes that may not quite make it to the tourist tables in tavernas.
Let’s lose the image of traditional beans on toast here please. Although those beans are good for you too (in moderation) these non commercial, make it at home, non packaged beans are the business.
Black eyed beans are packed with nutrients and so good for you. Throw in that spinach and the punch of fennel and you have a plate of total Greek goodness in front of you.
You can serve this dish as part of a meze starter to share or as a side dish for your main course. Often in Greece this is just served as a main dish itself and eaten with a spoon like soup with good crusty bread on the side.
Try this one on your Meat Free Monday or any day you fancy going a wee bit healthy.
BLACK EYED BEANS WITH SPINACH AND FENNEL
- 100 g black eyed beans soaked overnight in 500ml water
- 1 to mato chopped
- 125 ml water
- ½ onion chopped
- 1 clove garlic minced
- 2 tbsp fennel fronds finely chopped
- 1 handful spinach chopped
- Salt and pepper to taste
- Saute the onion in olive oil for 4 mins
- Add the garlic for 2 mins
- Add fennel and spinach plus 125ml water and simmer for 20 mins
- Add tomato and the drained beans plus seasoning and a little more water
- Simmer for a further 20 mins
- Serves 2 as a warm starter meze