- rinse the lima beans in cold water
- in a large pot, combine 4 cups water, 1 tbsp coarse salt, 1 tbsp white vinegar and 2 cups rinsed beans and bring to a boil
- let boil for 5-7 minutes, remove from heat immediately, add 4 cups very cold ice water and let rest for 90-120 minutes
- after 90-120 minutes, empty the water, add 4 cups fresh cold water, the diced onion and green pepper, the tomato purée and paste, the olive oil, bay leaves, salt, ground pepper, dried herbs and spices
- bring to a boil and then simmer at medium heat for 60 minutes
- preheat oven to 180°C
- brush a baking pan with 2 tbsp olive oil, transfer contents of the pot to the baking pan, taste and adjust salt & pepper, sprinkle with fresh herbs, cover with aluminum foil and bake for 60-70 minutes (uncover for the last 10-15 minutes)
note: half-way through (about 35 minutes), check if the dish is too liquid or too dry, if slightly dry, add ¼ cup water (or ¼ cup tomato purée) and 2 tbsp olive oil and stir and recover with aluminum foil; if too liquid, bake uncovered for the last 30 minutes (instead of the initially indicated 10-15 minutes).
- serve warm, with country bread (or as I did, with pan-fried smoked sausages too).
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