Smoky Sun-Dried Tomato Beans

These smoky sun-dried tomato beans are simmered in a deliciously creamy sauce that ticks all of the boxes flavour wise: it’s creamy, tangy, slightly smoky and a little bit spicy with a good hit of umami. The sauce is super easy to make: everything is added to a blender (or food processor) and blitzed until smooth and creamy. It’s a perfect for a quick, tasty midweek dinner – don’t forget a big chunk of toasted sourdough for scooping!

Can I use different types of beans?

The combination of cannellini and butter beans works really well with the sauce: the cannellini beans are slightly smaller and softer, while the butter beans are slightly bigger and more starchy. You can use all butter beans or all cannellini beans if you prefer, completely up to you (and what you have in your cupboard!). You can also sub either type of bean for chickpeas.

Which type of sun-dried tomatoes should be used?

Jarred sun-dried tomatoes should be used for this recipe as they can be added straight to the blender for the sauce and are soft enough to blend into a smooth consistency. The oil in the jar often contains herbs and garlic etc. which infuses the tomatoes with extra flavour to add to the sauce.

Do the cashews need to be soaked?

Yes, to allow them to blend into a nice creamy consistency, I would recommend soaking the cashews for at least 10-15 minutes in boiling water or at least a few hours at room temperature. Unsoaked cashews will make the sauce very grainy and it will not be creamy enough.

What should the beans be served with?

It’s completely up to you (and how hungry you are!). If I’m making this dish for lunch or a light dinner, I like to eat it as it is. They’re also great served with toasted sourdough, wholegrain rice or quinoa or some steamed greens (think kale or tenderstem broccoli). It’s a great one for adding extra greens too – some shredded kale would go well with the spinach.

Smoky Sun-Dried Tomato Beans

Ingredients
  

  • 50 g cashews soaked (or boiled for 15 mins)
  • 100 g sun-dried tomatoes
  • 2 garlic cloves
  • 3 tbsp nutritional yeast
  • 1/2 tbsp miso
  • 2 tbsp tomato puree
  • 1/2 tsp chilli flakes
  • 1 tsp smoked paprika
  • 200 ml unsweetened soya milk
  • 1 x 400g tin butterbeans
  • 1 x 400g tin cannellini beans
  • 100 g spinach roughly chopped
  • Juice of 1/2 lemon

Garnish

  • Chopped parsley
  • Chilli flakes

Instructions
 

  • Drain the cashews and add to a blender with all of the other ingredients for the sauce. Blend until smooth, adding a splash more milk if necessary.
  • Drain and rinse both tins of beans and add to a large pan. Season with salt and pepper.
  • Pour the sauce into the pan and stir over a medium heat until piping hot. Stir in the spinach and continue stirring until it wilts. Season to taste and then squeeze in the juice of 1/2 lemon.
  • Serve, top with chilli flakes and parsley and enjoy!

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