White Bean Stew (Gjellë me Grosh)
White bean stew is a delicious meal, easy to make and very healthy and nutritious. The recipe below is made with dry beans, stewed in red sauce made with chopped tomatoes or tomato paste and onion. White beans are legumes high in protein and have significant amount of fiber in them. In Albania white beans stew is usually served with fermented food such as pickled tomato or cucumber also rice and bread. This recipe can be a very good vegetarian meal by simply omitting the meat. Dry white beans also are called fasule or grosh, depending on the region or country.
- 2 pounds beef chuck short ribs
- 2 cups dry white beans
- 1 onion, chopped
- 3 tomatoes, peeled and chopped
- 1/3 cup olive oil
- 1.5 tbsp salt
- 1 tsp pepper flakes (optional)
- 1/3 cup fresh parsley, roughly chopped
- 1 tbsp paprika powder (optional)
- 1 tsp ground black pepper
- 6 cups of water
- red pepper to taste
Place the white beans in a pot and and cover with 6 cups of cold water. Bring it to a gentle boil for 15 minutes then drain the water. In a large heavy bottom pot, pour 6 cups of hot water. Stir in white beans (once boiled) and beef chuck short ribs. Bring it to a boil, cover and simmer in medium-high heat. White beans need to be cooked for about 1 hour or until they are soft. While you simmering white beans, skim off any foam that rises on the top of the stock from the meat. Stir often and add hot water as needed when it evaporates. Meantime in another skilled, saute chopped onion with olive oil over medium heat. Cook and stir until softened about 3-5 minutes. Add paprika and crushed red pepper and cook for 30 sec. Pour chopped tomatoes and bring to boil, then simmer uncovered in medium-low heat, stirring frequently until the mixture is rendered down to a thick sauce. Transfer the tomato sauce to the heavy bottom pot and season with salt and black pepper. Continue to simmer for 30-40 minutes over medium heat or until beans are tender and the beef is falling of the bone. It is very important to cook white bean stew on medium high heat for a gentle simmer, to prevent split skins. The beans should be tender and the broth thick but not mushy. Taste and adjust the salt. Garnish with parsley and serve.
P.S.: Beans stew require 1.5 to 2 hours to cook, this depends on the type of the bean variety such as red, black white, old, new etc.