Fasolia Gigantes with Broccoli Rabe and Feta

Fasolia Gigantes with Broccoli Rabe and Feta

Fasolia Gigantes are very large butter beans which are grown in Northern Greece. They have a special place in the Greek cuisine and are particularly popular during Lent time. They are often served at room temperature as part of a Mezze.

Canned Fasolia Gigante (I use the ones from Trader Joe’s) or large butter beans are a great help when preparing this dish. The remaining ingredients are very likely found in your refrigerator or pantry.

A more labor and time intensive version of it requires the soaking of the dried beans overnight and cooking before assembling this recipe.

Yield: 4

Time: 40 minutes (using canned beans)


  • 5 Tbsp canola oil
  • 4 Tbsp soy sauce
  • 2 Tbsp fresh lime juice
  • 1 Tbsp Sambal Oelek or Sriracha to taste
  • 3 garlic cloves Hnely minced
  • 3 Tbsp of cold water
  • 14 oz (400 g) extra Hrm tofu, pressed dry and cut into 1 inch (2,5 cm) cubes ◦ salt and freshly ground pepper
  • 8 oz (225 g) Asian style noodles like Honk Kong style noodles or Yakisoba ◦ 1 cup (140 g) julienned carrots
  • 1 medium sized red pepper, thinly sliced
  • 3 scallions, thinly sliced
  • 2 cups (130 g) snow peas, trimmed
  • 4 cups (120 g) spinach leaves, washed and spun dry
  • 1/2 cup cilantro or Sat-leaf parsley, roughly chopped
  • lime wedges for serving

When using dried Fasolia Gigantes soak them overnight in order to shorten cooking times. Next day bring beans to a boil and cook them about 1 hour or until they are quite soft. Tradition has it that after soaking beans one should remove the liquid, replenish the pot with fresh water, bring to a boil to remove the white froth forming on top and change water again before starting the cooking process. However this removes a lot of beneficial micro-nutrients as well as saponin, a harmless and perhaps even healthy ingredient. Nowadays most dried beans sold have been cleaned before packaging. If you buy beans directly from the producer or at a market stall, I would follow the traditional process to remove any impurities.


Heat 2 tablespoons olive oil in a large saucepan over high heat. Add the broccoli rabe and sauté for about 2-3 minutes or until broccoli is wilted. Remove from the skillet and set aside on a plate.

Add the remaining 2 tablespoons of olive oil to the same skillet and heat it over medium-high heat. Add onion, fennel, celery and garlic. Season with salt and pepper. Cook for about 10 minutes or until veggies are softened.

Add the tomato paste and oregano. Stir to coat. Add the tomato purée, vegetable broth, vinegar, sugar, salt, pepper and bay leaf. Bring to a boil and turn heat to a simmer. Cook for 10 minutes further or until the veggies are very soft and sauce has thickened to your liking.

Add the butter beans, broccoli rabe, preserved lemon slices, parsley and dill. Continue to simmer for about 5 minutes to allow the beans to absorb the veggie sauce. If sauce thickens too much, add some veggie broth to thin it up. Taste for seasoning.

Serve warm or at room temperature. Top with feta cheese and a drizzle of extra virgin olive oil.

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