somtum, dish, thailand

White beans with tomatoes

7 mins read
I see it clearly when I talk about it around me: it’s still not a celebration of glamor and joy when we talk about legumes. We imagine the hyper-traditional dishes that we eat more out of habit and patriotism than out of taste, the shapeless stuff that looks already digested on the plate.
Today I chose not to revolutionize much but I offer you a recipe that it is difficult not to like when it has been cooked well: the recipe for white beans with tomato.

It’s an easy recipe, quick to prepare, and which I find ideal for eating a good ration of protein for lunch and avoiding being hungry every 2 hours.

Which white beans to choose?

To begin with, I must confess that I never cook my legumes myself. However, I asked for a pressure cooker to reduce the cooking time 3 years ago at Christmas, I have it in my cupboard, but I never took the plunge. Cooking legumes is a bit like my own puff pastry. Insurmountable, complicated, difficult to succeed.
All jars and boxes are not necessarily equal, I try to buy white beans in jars to be able to see inside. Because with boxes it’s more complicated, right?

As much as chickpeas are rarely pureed, white beans are sometimes really floury and overcooked in cans and jars.
I advise you to check that they are not all gutted in their container. For these photos, I used very large beans found at Grand Frais, which were sold in large jars.
We can also obviously opt for mogettes, our white beans from here (and from Vendée, we’re not going to fight), which are quite easy to find and which I find a little plumper than white beans from cans.

Obviously if you cook them yourself, it’s still ideal for tender white beans that hold together.

Select good tomatoes for successful white beans

If you can take a simple can of tomato sauce for this recipe, it would be a shame in the middle of summer not to take advantage of the incredible texture of barely cooked tomatoes, melting but still holding together.
For a good dish, no secret: we need tomatoes that have seen the sun up close! To find beautiful tomatoes, I look at their shape and size, and above all, I feel them delicately. A ripe tomato is slightly tender, under no circumstances should it be firm and/or hard.
For a lower price, the local markets are a good compromise and allow you to find tomatoes at a reasonable price, otherwise the biocoops allow you to find beautiful products, certainly, a little more expensive.
The fact is that even living in a region armored with fields, I have not found a single “mainstream” supermarket that sells tomatoes worthy of the name, the only ones that can be found are those that grow, invariably in greenhouses. , and labeled as ribbed or old-fashioned, but stiff as justices and tasteless.

Season your white beans

You can imagine that I found a particular interest here to tell you about this recipe.
To start, then, good main ingredients, but then what?

The shallot is a particularly nice bulb that tolerates well not being overcooked: less aggressive than the onion, you can do without cooking it without having persistent breath.
It is also more subtle than the onion, which may be of interest to people who are not a fan!
I gently brown my shallot in fruity olive oil, I deglaze with soy sauce, then I add the tomato that I have removed its skin from: the miracle, the real thing, is that as you eat good tomatoes, the skin comes on its own.
Then, I let the cooking do its little magic for a few minutes, the tomato will crumble slightly but keep its inimitable texture.
Finally, we add the chef’s touch with a little fresh basil, a herb that I love in summer because it perfectly enhances all the dishes.

I constantly insist but the devil really hides in the details. The soy sauce here does a wonderful job of salting the dish, but also adding its slightly fermented flavor.
I strongly encourage you to try this tiny twist and rediscover tomato beans!

And if you are ever in the process of developing a devouring passion for white beans, do not hesitate to find my recipe for almond white bean spread : a real must have in the kitchen, sweeter than hummus, to vary the pleasures!

White beans with tomatoes

Beans, tomatoes, but not only: I suggest you add a little shallot and soy sauce to sublimate this dish ready in a few minutes.
Servings: 2 people


  • 400 g White beans cooked
  • 600 g tomatoes very ripe
  • 50 g shallot
  • 1 vs. soup olive oil
  • 2 vs. soup soya sauce
  • Basil fresh


  • Finely chop your shallot into slices.
  • Fry in your skillet/saucepan with the olive oil, until it becomes translucent, stirring regularly.
  • Add the soy sauce while lowering the heat.
  • Rinse and peel the tomatoes, and cut them into coarse pieces. Add to skillet.
  • Cook for about 5 minutes over medium heat: the tomatoes will start to crumble but still retain their texture.
  • Add the white beans and leave again for a few minutes, the time to heat the beans but without overcooking them to prevent them from bursting.
  • Serve hot with wholemeal bread, for example, and don’t forget to add pepper at the last moment and add a few fresh basil leaves.


The portions are variable: here I use this dish as a main course, with a little wholemeal bread. If you include it in a more complete plate with vegetables and another starchy food than bread, you can make more portions.