A tasty Italian rendition of the Baked Beans we enjoy in New England, but taking a fraction of the time to prepare. Although the Native Americans used corn as a support for the common bean, in Italy the Romano bean was used in their version of the Three Sisters.
This fiberrich bean is most often found in Minestrone soups, Fagioli dishes, and poultry cooked in the style of “all’uccelletto.” It is one of the few hearty bean varieties that pair perfectly with pungent and bold Mediterranean spices, such as listed below.
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- 1 teaspoon crushed garlic in oil
- 1/2 onion, minced
- 1 (28-ounce) can diced tomatoes with green chilies, undrained
- 1/2 teaspoon each dried rosemary, basil and oregano
- 3 (16-ounce) cans Romano beans, drained well
- 1 cup shredded Parmesan cheese
- 1/2 cup shredded, smoked provolone cheese
- 1/2 teaspoon red pepper flakes
- Salt and black pepper, to taste
- 1 Preheat oven to 400 F. In a large saucepan, heat oil over medium-high heat until shimmering hot.
- 2 Add garlic and stir well while cooking for 1 minute. Add onion, continuing to cook and stir until onions are tender about 3 minutes.
- 3 Add tomatoes and herbs, stirring well. Bring to a boil and then reduce heat to medium.
- 4 Cook 8-10 minutes, or until the liquid is starting to reduce and thicken.
- 5 Add beans, half of both kinds of cheese, red pepper flakes and salt and pepper, stirring to combine.
- 6 Transfer contents of the pan to a 2-quart baking or casserole dish, top with remaining cheese and bake until all cheese is melted and the entire dish is bubbling.
- 7 Remove from oven to serve hot.