Turkish Beans: Turkish-Style Pinto Beans in Olive Oil Recipe

Pinto Beans
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  • 40 mins
  • Prep: 10 mins,
  • Cook: 30 mins
  • Yield: 8-10 servings
Ratings (10)

There's nothing like the color and texture of fresh-picked pinto beans. Their cream-colored hulls covered with lovely speckles ranging from pink to purple make preparing and cooking this dish a pleasure. No one knows this feeling better than Turkish cooks. Different varieties of fresh and dried beans are staples in Turkish cuisine. It's no wonder that in Turkey you can find so many delicious recipes with beans. This recipe for pinto beans, or in Turkish, 'barbunya' (bar-BOON'-yah), cooked with tomatoes, onions, garlic, and carrots is no exception. It makes a perfect, lighter alternative to sugary baked beans. A perfect accompaniment hot dogs, sausages, and other barbecue favorites. The only difference is that they're served cold. Pinto beans in olive oil also make a great side dish or buffet platter. Vegetarians and vegans take note- pinto beans are very high in protein and fiber so this dish can also be eaten alone as a meatless main course. In this recipe, fresh pinto beans work the best, but depending on the season, you can also use dried or even canned pinto beans. If you choose to use dried beans, soak them in water overnight, then rinse well and cook them in a pressure cooker according to the directions until tender. Then use in the recipe. For canned pinto beans, rinse them under a lot of cold water. Make the recipe without the beans and let the liquid cook down. Add the rinsed beans about 10 minutes before you'ready to serve. Canned beans are delicate so stir them in gently with a wooden spoon.

What You'll Need

  • 2.5 lbs fresh pinto beans in their hulls, or 1 lb of hulled, fresh pinto beans
  • 1 large onion, finely diced
  • 3 tbsp. extra virgin olive oil
  • 3 or 4 large cloves garlic
  • 1 cup grated tomatoes (2 to 3  tomatoes yields about 1 cup)
  • 1 large carrot, peeled and diced into small cubes
  • 3 rounded tbsp. tomato paste
  • 2 tsp. salt
  • 1/2 tsp. black pepper
  • 2 tbsp. sugar
  • 1/3 cup extra-virgin olive oil
  • Garnish: chopped Italian parsley

How to Make It

  1. First, peel and dice your onion and garlic and put them in a covered saucepan along with 3 tbsp. of olive oil. Saute the onion and garlic until they're soft and reduced.
  2. Add the beans, carrots, grated tomato, tomato paste, sugar and spices. Add enough water to just cover the beans and stir until combined.
  3. Bring the mixture to a boil, then cover and reduce the heat to low. Let the beans simmer gently until much of the water is reduced and the beans and carrots are tender.
  1. When the beans are tender, turn off the heat and let the pan cool down. After it cools, spoon the beans gently onto your serving plate. Drizzle the olive oil evenly over the top.
  2. Cover with cling wrap and chill until ready to serve
  3. Just before serving, sprinkle the top with your chopped Italian parsley leaves for garnish.

See Also

Turkish Navy Bean Salad

Turkish Bulgur and Summer Vegetable Salad

A Guide to Turkish Meze