Prep 10 mins
Cook 2 hrs 15 mins
Adapted from House and Garden's New Cookbook. Times do not include time for the beans to soak.
- 5 sprigs parsley
- 3 celery, tops (leafy parts only)
- 4 garlic cloves
- 1 lb dried white bean, soaked overnight and drained
- 2 1⁄2 quarts water
- 2 teaspoons basil leaves
- 1 whole onion
- 1 teaspoon thyme
- 4 teaspoons salt, divided
- 1 teaspoon pepper, divided
- 4 tablespoons butter
- 3 large onions, finely chopped
- 2 garlic cloves, minced
- 2 tablespoons flour
- 1 1⁄2 cups broth
- 3 ounces tomato paste
- Place parsley, celery tops, and garlic on a square of cheesecloth.
- Tie into a bundle to make a bouquet garni.
- Cover beans with water.
- Add bouquet garni, tucking it among the beans.
- Add basil, whole onion, thyme, 1 tablespoon salt, and 1/2 teaspoon pepper.
- Cook over low heat until beans are almost but not completely softened, about 1 hour.
- Meanwhile, heat butter in a skillet and saute onions and garlic until golden.
- Reduce heat to low.
- Sprinkle flour over mixture, stirring in gradually.
- Slowly stir in bouillon.
- Slowly stir in tomato paste and remaining salt and pepper.
- Simmer until slightly reduced, about 30 minutes.
- Remove bouquet garni and whole onion from beans and discard.
- Check amount of liquid in beans. If there is more than about 1/4 cup, drain off excess and set aside.
- Add tomato sauce to beans.
- Cover and simmer over low heat for about 1 hour.
- Beans should still be slightly liquid. If too dry, add a little of the reserved water.