I’m always a bit hesitant to share recipes that have a long list of ingredients. I know there can be an automatic reaction: lots of ingredients equals a hard recipe. That’s not the case with this white bean masala. At least half the ingredients and instructions are for the paste which once you make once, you’ll find it goes fairly quick. Plus, you can double or triple the paste and freeze the extra (because trust me, once you take a bite, you’ll wish you had more!) This recipe is a slight adaption from my lentil masala, so if you love that recipe, I recommend you add this white bean masala to your list!
A well-round vegan meal that relies on a flavorful homemade masala paste. The paste can be made in an extra large batch and frozen for a few months making this recipe easy to throw together for a weeknight dinner.
- 1 1/2 teaspoons cumin seeds
- 1 1/2 teaspoons coriander seeds
- 2 inch piece of ginger peeled and minced
- 1/8 to 3 teaspoons red peper flakes see note
- 1 tablespoons smoked paprika
- 2 teaspoons garam masala
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 2 tablespoons peanut oil or other nut oil
- 2 tablespoons tomato paste
- 1/3 cup packed cilantro leaves
- 2 large sweet potatoes
- 1 teaspoon olive oil
- 2 teaspoons olive oil
- 1 small yellow or white onion (150g) minced
- 1 clove garlic minced
- 1 cup crushed tomatoes
- 1/2 cup whole coconut milk
- 1/2 cup low-sodium vegetable broth
- 2 cups cannellini beans drained and rinsed if using canned
- 2 cups packed and shredded kale 2 ounces
- Cilantro for serving
To make paste, toast cumin and coriander seeds in skillet until fragrant. Use a mortar and pestle (or a spice grinder) to grind spices.
In a small food processor, add ginger and pulse until broken into small pieces. Add red pepper flakes, smoked paprika, cumin, coriander, garam marsala, and salt. Pulse a couple more times to incorporate. Next, add nut oil, tomato paste, and cilantro leaves. Pulse until paste forms and everything is well incorporated. Measure ⅓ cup of the paste and save the rest for later use.
Preheat oven to 400˚F. Scrub the sweet potatoes and slice in half. Toss with olive oil and salt. Place cut-side down on a sheet tray covered with parchment paper and roast until tender, 30 to 40 minutes depending on the size of the potatoes
Heat a dutch oven over medium heat. Add the olive oil followed by the minced onion. Stir and cook until the onions are translucent, 5 or so minutes. Stir in the garlic and cook for a minute more.
Stir in masala paste, cooking for a minute, then add crushed tomatoes, coconut milk, and vegetable broth. Bring to a boil, reduce to a simmer, and add the beans. Cook for 5 minutes then add the shredded kale, cooking for another 5 minutes or so until the kale has wilted.
Once the sweet potatoes are done, spoon the white bean mixture over the sweet potatoes. Sprinkle with cilantro and serve.
White Bean Masala
To say I love this recipe is an understatement. There’s something cozy and comforting about a potato smothered with a rich, stew-like sauce. I’ve been know to make the sauce only with just a legume and leave the greens out or I’ll mix up the greens I use.
Legumes: The original recipe calls for cooking red lentils in the sauce (which is delicious) but you could also use cooked chickpeas or any type of white bean.
Greens: Spinach, chard, or collards would work in place of the kale.
Polenta: You could easily serve this white bean masala over regular potatoes but another favorite variation is to use polenta as the base.
While I’ve proclaimed my love for chickpeas over and over again, I find myself turning to the range of white beans when it comes to comfort foods. These beans lend an extra creamy aspect to these dishes that put the recipes over the top. I love the large cannellini bean but the smaller navy beans are great as well.