Ixta Belfrage’s vegan recipe for a gratin of butter beans, roasted tomatoes and salsa fresca | Food

AAs promised, here is another (completely different) use of béchamel that I presented to you last week. This time it’s flavored with cumin and baked in a gratin with white beans and roasted cherry tomatoes, with a zingy Salsa Fresco cut through wealth. It’s pretty much a meal in one that only needs a side salad or sautéed greens.

Creamy butter bean gratin with roasted tomatoes and Salsa Fresco

Gnocchi would also work great here instead of beans; cook them in salted water before adding them to the roasted tomatoes.

Preperation 20 mins
to cook 50 minutes
serves 2-4

450g sweet ripe cherry tomatoeslike daterini
15g coriandersoft leaves and stems
3 cloves of garlicpeeled and mashed with the flat of a knife
3½ tablespoons olive oil
2 teaspoons of maple syrup
1 teaspoon flaked salt
Black pepper
1 jar (660 g) cooked butter beans
drained (425g net)

For the cumin béchamel
300g silken tofuvery well drained
40g white miso paste
2 tablespoons olive oil
2 teaspoons dried onion granules
1 small clove of garlic
peeled
½ teaspoon ground cumin
Lots of freshly grated nutmeg
(or ⅛ teaspoon ground nutmeg)
¼ teaspoon fine salt

For the salsa fresca
1 medium ripe tomatofinely chopped (100g)
1 red pepperfinely chopped (optional)
¼ onionfinely chopped (30g)
1½ tablespoons good olive oilplus extra to serve
1 tbsp lime juiceplus lime wedges for serving
¼ teaspoon fine salt
5 g (1⅓ tbsp.) finely chopped cilantro

Heat the oven to 240 C (220 C fan)/475 F/Gas 9. Place the cherry tomatoes in a 26 cm round baking dish or baking dish in which they will fit snugly in a single layer . Add cilantro, garlic, oil, maple syrup, salt and lots of pepper and stir to coat. Roast near the top of the oven for 25-30 minutes, until softened and lightly charred.

Meanwhile, put all the ingredients for the béchamel in a blender with about 10 turns of the pepper mill and blitz smooth.

Once the tomatoes are roasted, stir in the drained butter beans and a tablespoon of water. Turn the grill to its highest setting. Top the beans with the béchamel, leaving spaces here and there for the tomatoes and liquid to bubble up when toasted, then drizzle with oil and broil, again near the top of the oven, until browned. they’re golden brown and bubbly – depending on how strong your grill is, this will take between five and 12 minutes, so keep an eye on them. (If you have a blowtorch, use it to evenly shade the surface once the bechamel has heated through.) Remove and let cool for five minutes.

Meanwhile, prepare the salsa fresca. In a small bowl, combine the tomato, chili pepper, onion, oil, lime juice and half a teaspoon of flaked salt. Just before serving, stir in cilantro.

Top the gratin with a little salsa, then drizzle with oil, sprinkle with flaked salt and black pepper, and serve with lime wedges and the remaining salsa on the side.

Ixta Belfrage’s first solo cookbook, Mezcla: Recipes to Excite, is published by Ebury in July.

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