Braised Butter Beans

Braised butter beans go well with many other dishes as well as confit.


  • 1 onion, chopped
  • 2 smoked bacon rashers, rinded and cut into strips
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1 tablespoon unsalted butter
  • 1 garlic clove, crushed
  • 8 fresh basil leaves, chopped
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 100 g (4 oz) dried butter beans
  • 600–900 ml (1–1½ pints) Chicken Stock
  • 2 tomatoes, skinned, seeded and diced
  • Salt and freshly ground black pepper

To serve


Pre-heat the oven to 180°C/350°F/gas 4.

Sweat the chopped onion and bacon in a flameproof dish in the olive oil and butter for a few minutes, then add the garlic, basil, bay leaf and butter beans. Cover with 600 ml (1 pint) of chicken stock and bring to the simmer. Cover and cook in the preheated oven for 1–1½ hours until the beans are tender; they may need a little more stock added during the cooking process.

When the beans are tender they will have created a thick sauce. Add the tomatoes, salt and pepper and spoon on to hot plates. Mix the curly endive with the vinaigrette and sit some on top of the beans. Finish with the hot, glazed duck confit and pour some red wine sauce around.