Tavče gravče is a traditional Macedonian dish of beans slowly boiled and then baked with oil. These “pot beans” are a hearty side dish and packed full of flavour during the double-cooking process.
You can add different vegetables or meat to the beans as you bake, but the basic recipe below is more than tasty enough. We used tinned beans to speed up the cooking time – if you’re using dried beans, soak them overnight and add an extra hour to the boiling time, checking the beans every 10 mins or so to make sure they’re not turning to mush.
Time: 2 hr 30 mins / Serves: 6 / DIFFICULTY: Easy
Rinse the beans. Place in a pan with 1 sliced onion, the chopped garlic and 1 bay leaf. Cover with water and bring to the boil, then turn down and leave to simmer for 90 mins.
Drain the beans and remove the onion slices. Add to an earthen pot or, if not to hand, a casserole dish.
Heat the oil in a frying pan. Stir in the paprika and chilli flakes and mix until the colour starts to change. Be careful not to burn!
Mix the sauce in with the beans, along with the chopped pepper. Arrange the other onion slices on top, then put in the oven at 180°C for 45 minutes - 1 hour. You'll want the top of the beans to have a nice crust and for the onion to be cooked through.