This week I had a request from my husband to make an old favorite that we haven’t had for a while. This stew is different from anything else I make because it uses a whole head of garlic.
Now, if you’ve tasted my baba ganoush, you know I can tolerate some garlic. But even I couldn’t stand 15-20 cloves, except for one thing–they’re not chopped. Cooking them whole mellows them out much like roasting does, so when you bite into one, you still get the garlic taste but in a milder, creamier version.
One of the best things about this recipe is that there’s nothing “weird” in it–meaning, you probably have all the ingredients in your pantry, and if not, you can easily find them in any grocery store. Give it a try and I promise you will be amazed at how delicious a whole head of garlic tastes!
White Bean and Garlic Stew
Cooking garlic whole gives it a delicious, mellow flavor. Try it!
- 2 15-ounce cans cannellini or great northern beans (about 3 cups), rinsed and drained
- 1 head garlic (the whole bulb–15-20 cloves)
- 2 tablespoons water
- 3-4 carrots peeled and chopped
- 2 medium yellow onions chopped
- 1 14-ounce can diced tomatoes
- 2 bay leaves
- 1 cup water
- 1 teaspoon salt or to taste
- 1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
- 1/2 cup fresh parsley
- 1 tablespoon lemon juice
Break the garlic bulb into cloves and peel off the skin. If you’d like, chop one of the cloves, but leave the others whole. If some of the cloves are very large, you may cut them in half lengthwise.
Heat a large, non-stick soup pot. Add the onion and sauté until it turns a rich, medium-brown, about 5 minutes, adding a tablespoon of water if it begins to stick. Add the garlic and carrots and sauté for 1 more minute.
Add the beans, tomatoes, bay leaves, and water. Cover the pot and simmer for about an hour, adding water if it gets too thick.
Stir in the salt and pepper. If you’re serving the stew right away, add all the parsley and the lemon juice. If you’re serving it later or at room temperature, add the parsley and lemon juice right before serving.
Serve over brown rice.