Gigantes Plaki recipe (Gigandes Greek Baked ‘Giant’ Beans)
Posted in Appetizer & Meze, Baked, Beginner, Comfort food, Heartwarming dishes, Intermediate, Main Courses, Mainland Greece, Our hand picked recipes, Side dishes, Traditional Greek Easter Lent recipes, Traditional Greek Taverna Recipes, Vegetarian Originally published on October 24, 2013 Last updated on November 2, 2015 By Eli K. Giannopoulos
Filling and super-healthy! Gigantes plaki (Greek baked gigantes) is a classic Greek recipe, consisting of ‘giant’ beans baked in a tomato sauce along with plenty of fresh herbs, which give a really unique taste. This Gigantes recipe takes some time to prepare, but it’s all worth it!
The beans will come out creamy and tender with a flavorful thick tomato sauce. To prepare the traditional Gigantes plaki recipe, try to find original gigantes beans at Greek or ethnic markets; if you can’t find them, substitute with large lima beans or elephant beans or butter beans. Enjoy this traditional Greek Gigantes plaki dish as a hearty vegetarian meal or as a delicious appetizer on top of some crusted bread. Don’t forget to garnish with some salty crumbled feta on top. (See also step 6 for an easier alternative of the traditional Gigantes recipe)
- 500g gigantes beans (17 ounces)
- 1/2 cup olive oil
- 1 small clove of garlic
- 1 large onion, finely chopped
- 4-5 tbsps parsley, finely chopped
- 1/2 tbsp celery, finely chopped
- 1/2 cup of hot water
- 400g (14 ounces) tinned chopped tomatoes or 600g (21 ounces) ripped fresh tomatoes, grated
- 1 tsp dried oregano
- salt and freshly ground pepper to taste
- To prepare the gigantes (Gigsntes) plaki, start by soaking the gigantes beans overnight into plenty of water. Drain them into a colander and rinse with plenty of water.
- Place the gigantes in a large pan with cold water, enough to cover them, add a pinch of sea salt and bring to a boil. Turn the heat down and simmer for 45 minutes, until tender but not cooked. Drain them in a colander and set aside.
- In the meantime, pour into a large baking pan the olive oil, add the chopped onions, the whole garlic clove (peeled) and bake at 180C, until softened and slightly colored (approx. 15 minutes).
- Turn the baking pan out of the oven; add the gigantes beans (drained), the celery, the parsley, ½ cup of hot water and season with salt and pepper. Put back in the oven and bake for 30 minutes.
- Turn the baking tray out of the oven, blend the gigantes beans lightly with a wooden spoon and pour in the grated tomatoes or plum tomatoes. Season with salt and pepper, add a pinch of oregano and bake the gigantes plaki further for 50-60 minutes at 180C, until the beans are soft and tender and the sauce thickens.
- For an easier alternative, after soaking the gigantes beans overnight, drain and rinse them. Place in a large pan with enough water to cover them and bring to the boil. Boil for 5 minutes, drain them and place into a large baking pan, along with all of the ingredients, cover with some aluminum foil and bake at 180C for approx. 2 hours. The last 30 minutes, bake without the aluminium foil. Enjoy!