Contributed by Laura Pensiero, Gigi Trattoria
Substitute large dried lima beans if you can’t find gigantes.
1 pound dried gigantes beans or dried large lima beans (about 2 ½ ; cups)
3 tbsp olive oil
2 strips bacon, chopped
1 lg onion, chopped
1 cup chopped celery
1 cup diced green bell peppers
2 garlic cloves, minced
2 tsp dried oregano
1 1⁄2 cups tomato sauce (homemade or store bought)
1⁄3 cup ketchup
1⁄4 cup maple syrup
3 tbsp Dijon mustard
1 tbsp Worcestershire sauce
1⁄2 tsp smoked paprika
Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
Dutch oven with lid
Sort and wash beans; place in a large Dutch oven with lid. Cover by 2- inches with water above beans; cover and let stand 8 hours or overnight. Drain beans. Cover, again by 2 inches with water above beans, and bring to a boil. Cover, reduce heat, and simmer 1 hour or until beans are tender but not falling apart. Drain beans.
Preheat oven to 325°.
While beans cook, heat oil in a large nonstick skillet over medium heat until hot. Add bacon, onion, celery, peppers, and garlic; cook 10 minutes, stirring occasionally. Stir in oregano, tomato sauce and ketchup; simmer 10 minutes. Stir in maple syrup, mustard, Worcestershire sauce, paprika and season with salt and pepper. Combine the cooked beans and tomato mixture in a 3-quart casserole lightly rubbed with olive oil. Bake at 325° until bubbling and thickened, 1 hour.