Here is a dish that checks many boxes: visually appealing, vegan, gluten-free, easy to double or triple, loaded with foods that are indigenous to The Americas. And best of all, it's absolutely delicious. The beans feel right at home in the center of things, as they should.
Your baking dish will determine the amount of ingredients you need. The dish in the photo is a small 1-quart gratin dish; you could use a larger dish and double or even triple the recipe. With a larger dish, you could make two rings of vegetables with the beans in the center. It's flexible!
- 1 large garlic clove, peeled
- 3 to 4 tablespoons olive oil
- About 1/2 pound baby potatoes (preferably multicolored), thinly sliced
- 2 small or 1 medium zucchini, thinly sliced
- 6 to 8 sweet mini bell peppers (orange, red, and/or yellow), cored, seeded, and cut into thin rings
- 1 to 2 cups cooked white beans, such as Rancho Gordo Cassoulet or Alubia Blanca
- 1 tablespoon fresh thyme leaves, stripped from the stems
- Salt and pepper to taste
Serves 4 as a side dish
- Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Cut the garlic in half and rub the cut side on the bottom of a 1-quart baking dish. Coat with a tablespoon or so of olive oil. Thinly slice the remaining garlic.
- Arrange the potatoes, zucchini, bell pepper, and garlic slices in a ring around the outside of the dish, alternating the vegetables. Pile the beans in the center of the dish. Sprinkle generously with thyme, salt, and pepper, and drizzle with a generous amount of olive oil.
- Cover the dish with aluminum foil and bake for about 1 hour, until the vegetables are very soft and tender. Uncover and bake 10 to 15 minutes more. Stir the beans carefully, then drizzle with more olive oil and sprinkle with pepper. Serve