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Macedonian Baked Beans (Tavče Gravče)

  • Author: Balkan Lunch Box
  • Prep Time: 5 mins
  • Cook Time: 95 mins
  • Total Time: 1 hour 40 mins
  • Yield: 6 1x
  • Category: Side Dish

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Ingredients

  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 24 ounces dry white flat beans (lima, butter bean or tetovac)
  • 24 ounces yellow onion (cleaned, diced into half moons)
  • 1/3 teaspoon ground pepper
  • 1.5 teaspoons seasoned salt (or vegeta or 1 bouillon cube)
  • 3 teaspoons paprika
  • 7 ounces vegetable oil

Instructions

  1. In a large bowl, soak beans overnight in plenty of water and baking soda.
  2. The following day strain the beans and wash thoroughly. Transfer to a large pan and cover with 6-8 cups of water. Bring to boil on high, then lower the temperature to medium. Continue cooking beans for the 60 minutes or until they are soft, but not falling apart. During cooking, keep removing the foam that forms on top of the pot and stir.
  3. About 40 minutes after you’ve put beans to cook, heat oil in a large pan on high. Add onions and lower the temperature to medium. Simmer for 15-20 minutes, or until onion crystalizes but isn’t completely brown. Heat oven to 480°F.
  4. Remove beans and onions off heat. Strain beans, however keep 8-10 ounces of water in which it was cooked. Transfer to a baking pan by first layering the onion, then the beans. Add spices on top. Finally, add the bean water. Mix thoroughly and transfer to the oven. Lower heat to 390°F.
  5. Bake 30 to 40 minutes. Check once or twice. The beans should be baked and soft with a slight, non-dry crispiness in parts.
  6. Serve warm.

Notes

The usual ratio is 1 part onion 1 part beans. However you can adjust until you achieve the taste you like.
Traditional Macedonian baked pans ask for sharper, spicier paprika. We used the sweet paprika usually used in Bosnia and Serbia.
VARIATIONS:
Gluten-free: Use vegeta or a gluten-free bouillon cube.

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