Winter is the time when we often crave hot and hearty comfort foods (even if you live in tropics), which nourish our bodies and souls and warm us from the inside out. This stew is the perfect answer for those cravings! It is filling, deeply satisfying and packed with flavor.
Although it takes some time to make it (mostly oven time), trust me - the result is well worth it. Creamy cannellini beans work really well here, because they are quite soft and you can mash some of them at the end of cooking to create a thick and saucy stew, which I personally love. However, when you cook these beans on the stove, often times they can explode and fall apart, producing less than perfect result. Cooking the beans in 250-degree oven ensures the beans stay intact. It is also important to soak the beans overnight, because it softens the skins and helps get rid of the protective enzymes, which are hard for your body to digest and may contain toxins. Tomatoes add just enough acidity, and garlic and rosemary deepen the flavor, creating an overall well-balanced and delicious stew.
Beans are a nutrient dense food and a great source of proteins, fiber, antioxidants and other nutrients. This is especially helpful food if you are transitioning to a vegan or vegetarian diet. The fiber and healthy starches in beans can help prevent food cravings. People may feel fuller after consuming beans, which may prevent overeating and even help with weight loss.
This recipe can easily be made fat free by substituting cooking oil with vegetable broth or water and omitting olive oil and vegan Parmesan garnish. I have made it in both versions and found both of them to be equally delicious.
So go ahead, try it and let us know what you think.