Baked Lima Beans with Celery | A Creamy Rustic Greek Dish

Gigantes are Greek Giant Beans (the name always reminds me of Jack and the Beanstalk). You can get them from Greek shops, or Lima Beans (Butter Beans) are wonderful substitutes.

Recipes for Gigantes abound across Greece, and they often involve baking. If soaked, cooked and then baked, the beans are so soft and creamy. Often they are cooked in a terracotta pot.

Our recipe today, a traditional one from Greece, bakes the beans with celery and a tomato base. It takes some time to make – soak the beans overnight, simmer for 60 – 90 mins, then bake for 60 – 90 mins. I recommend it for a quiet Sunday morning (for lunch) or afternoon (for dinner). Slow, wonderful cooking. However, each step is easy, with hardly any oversight required.

The success of this dish depends on each step – soak well, cook the beans until tender but not completely cooked, bake until creamy. And it depends on the quality of the olive oil – ensure current season, good quality oil if you can. And always store your oil in dark bottles or tins in a dark cupboard away from heat, light and the sun’s rays.

Similar recipes include Slow Cooked Tomato Chickpeas with Burrata, Rustic Spicy Butter Beans, Chickpea and Lima Bean Noodle Soup, and Florentine Beans.

Browse all of our Lima Bean recipes, and all of our Greek dishes. Our Baked Bean dishes are here. Or explore our Late Autumn dishes.

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Caponata Siciliana | Eggplant, Olive, and Celery Appetizer

This is a beautiful dish with Roman origins, from Sicily. There is something  beautifully different about some of the taste combinations you’ll find in Sicily, especially the tendency to combine sweet and sour – a legacy, they say, of ancient Roman days when sweet dates were used instead of tomatoes and sugar.

La caponata, one of the most famous Sicilian dishes, is a good example. It’s a cousin to the ratatouille of Provence. Caponata features eggplant, with celery, tomato and onions along with capers and olives. These are typical Southern Italian flavours. And it has that sweet-and-sour touch that perfectly balances out the flavours. It layers different flavours one upon the other, and, if you care to cook it for 30 mins or more, the flavours are deep and glorious and the consistency almost jam-like.

Serve Caponata on its own, hot or room temperature, on a Sunday afternoon (with a glass of wine, of course), or in the traditional manner as an antipasto. Caponata can be served on bruschetta, with flatbread or with salad leaves, and it’s also perfect as a side dish or even as a relish.

Ruth Rogers and Rose Gray note warily in the River Cafe Classic Italian Cookbook that “there are as many ways to make caponata as there are cooks in Sicily”, a fact confirmed by Giorgio Locatelli, who claims that “in every house and in every restaurant you will find a different version and opinion.”

There are many versions of Caponata on Sicily – apparently 37 official versions, depending on local customs. The differences lie in the addition of different vegetables, for example potatoes, bell peppers, zucchini.

Are you looking for other Eggplant dishes? Try Babaganoush, Grilled Eggplant Salad, Baingan ka Bharta and Eggplant Fry.

We have other Celery recipes too. Try Celery Yoghurt Salad, Spicy Celery Salad, and Chickpea, Celery and Carrot Salad with a Curry Dressing.

Or perhaps some other Italian dishes. Try Farinata, Marinated Zucchini Salad, Wet Polenta and Tomato Layers, and Grilled Sweet Peppers and Eggplants.

Or you can browse all of our Eggplant recipes, all of our Celery recipes, or all of our Italian recipes. Alternatively, take some time to explore our Mid Autumn dishes.

This is a recipe from our first blog which ran from 1995 – 2006. You can browse all of the vegetarian recipes from that blog in our Retro Recipes series.

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Kohlrabi, Beetroot and Celery Leaf Salad

There is celery growing in the garden, but we’re not great celery eaters. Of course, in Winter, it is an essential in all sorts of vegetable and other braises – Barley, for example – and Soups of course. It is an essential thing to have. But we are not big on celery salads, or raw sticks. Unless there is a killer dip to go with the sticks.

But our young celery brings to the kitchen the delicious celery flavour of its micro-thin stems and young, crunchy leaves. Both do go beautifully in salads and when we make a herb salad, our celery leaves and stems form a vital part. We also use it in place of flat leafed parsley. It is divine.

When I came across a recipe from Ottolenghi using Celery Leaves as an ingredient I was delighted. Moreso, as we had kohlrabi and beetroot innocently sitting in the vegetable crisper. It was meant to be. Frankly, I can’t get enough of this salad, with the beautiful crispness of the apple, beetroot and kohlrabi.

Use a mandolin to cut the beetroot, kohlrabi and apple into thin slices. This also works well if you julienne them into thin sticks (which I love). Ottolenghi suggests using Candy Beetroot for extra visual oomph – if you have them, great. If not, use your normal, run-of-the-mill beets.

I am using my purple chillies from the garden, which may be Naga Jolokia Purple Chillies (the plant does look so similar), but is more likely Purple Jalapeño. Whatever, you don’t need exotic chillies to make this work. Ottolenghi suggests urfa chilli flakes, but I say use fresh or dried chillies, whatever you have. I have also made this with Korean Chilli Flakes. Perfect.

Today it is Ottolenghi day on the blog – one of two days per month where we publish all the latest posts of recipes we have tried in our project of cooking from Ottolenghi books – currently we are cooking from Plenty More, but not ignoring his other books completely. Note that I often slightly massage the recipes to suit what is available from our garden and pantry.

Are you after other Ottolenghi Inspiration? Try Parsley and Barley Salad, Mung Bean and Baked Carrot Salad, and Tomato and Pomegranate Salad.

We don’t have many Kohlrabi dishes, but try Kohlrabi Subzi.

Or try these Beetroot Salads: Roasted Beetroot with Maple Dressing, Beets with a Herb Dressing, Beets with a Honey Ginger Dressing and Beetroot and Carrot Salad with Indian Spices.

Still want more? Check all Ottolenghi dishes, all Kohlrabi recipes and all Beetroot Recipes. We have written about our experiences cooking through Plenty More. We have so many delicious Salads worth exploring. Or make a cuppa and work through our Early Autumn dishes. Enjoy!

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Thick Thick Yoghurt with Zaatar, Walnuts and Olive Oil | Labneh with Walnuts and Zaatar

While others may call drained yoghurt as Labneh, I have always made it myself and began calling it Thick Thick Yoghurt all those years ago, before I had ever heard of Labneh and before labneh became trendy.

It is a versatile product that can be used in a multitude of savoury and sweet ways. Salt it and add spices to use as a spread, dip, dressing or filling. Serve with wedges of toasted pita bread. Sweeten it a little (or not) and use it with fruits, jam, on scones, on toast and jam and it is a great alternative to cream.

Countries from India through the Middle East and into the Mediterranean make and use thick thick yoghurt. This dish is one that uses golpar, that tangy, slightly tart powder made from Persian hogweed. Speaking in terms of traditional medicine, the use of golpar with yoghurt counteracts the cold property of yoghurt. You can buy it from Middle Eastern, Afghan and some Asian groceries. You can substitute some grated lemon rind – it is a different flavour but will still be very very good.

Use this as a mezze dish, a dip, with tomatoes and cucumbers (and radishes), a spread in a sandwich or wrap, slavered over baked vegetables, in place of sour cream.

To get you started, this is how you make Thick Thick Yoghurt. And read more about Golpar.

Similar dishes include Yoghurt and Kaffir Lime Spread, Ways to Use Thick Thick Yoghurt, Salty, Garlicky Thick Thick Yoghurt, and Blueberry Shrikand.

Browse all Thick Thick Yoghurt dishes and our Dips and Spreads. Or explore our Late Summer dishes.

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Celery Salad with Sour Grapes and Burrata

They say that Burrata is the best thing since sliced bread. And certainly it is very very good. A delicious mozzarella shell filled with thick cream. Has your mind gone to heaven? Indeed. It is simply the dreamiest. Creamy, luscious – burrata is Italian for butter, if that gives you any clues on how beautiful it can be.

Burrata is quite difficult to find here, in our little outback town of Adelaide. Not so in other cities, where it perches on the shelves of every supermarket. I had to search hard to find it within reasonable driving distance of my home. It took some time – distributors and cheese makers were not willing to help – I contacted several – but persistence paid and I found a reliable source not far from my work. That is Adelaide for you.

One of the great things about Burrata is that it is perfect for replacing coddled or poached eggs in salads. Thus for those who, like me, avoid cooking with eggs, the creaminess of the interior with the soft mozzarella coating brings that something that soft cooked eggs give to salads and baked dishes.

Celery salads are so rare, but I love one particular recipe, it is my favourite use of celery. I have modified it here to include the burrata. I hope you enjoy it. The origin is an Ottolenghi salad but the recipe keeps morphing into a dish that is appearing more and more often on our table.

Oh, and the other ingredient that is introduced in this salad, is Sour Grapes. Yes, I know, you all know those who are always full of sour grapes. But, it is also an exciting ingredient. Preserved sour grapes can be found in jars in Middle Eastern and Afghani groceries. They taste sour and briney, and a little like capers and caper berries. They are great in salads and in dishes where a sour taste is called for to balance other flavours. Pick some up today (or use capers in place of the grapes).

Similar recipes include Purslane Salad with Herbs and Burrata, Celery Yoghurt Salad, Nashi Pear and Celery Salad, and some Simple Celery Salads.

Browse our Celery Salads and all of our Celery dishes. Our Burrata dishes are here.  Or explore our Mid Summer dishes.

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Celery Quick Pickle with Chilli

I am always looking for celery recipes to fill that void that a lack of celery dishes creates. An unassertive vegetable – it always plays second fiddle to other vegetables rather than feature in its own right – it deserves much more prominence.

This is a quick pickle is a perfect accompaniment to meals (I like to have a pickle with each meal, it balances the other flavours), and a perfect ingredient in other salads or even sandwiches. It keeps well in the fridge, so make a double batch. I like to add chilli and spring onions to the mix.

Are you looking for similar recipes? Try Celery Yoghurt Salad, Spicy Celery Salad, and Simple Celery Salads.

Try also Quick Carrot Pickle, Carrot and Kombu Quick Pickle and Onion Strings Pickled Salad.

You might see our other Celery Dishes. Or browse all of our Salad recipes here. And explore our easy Mid Spring recipes.

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Celery Yoghurt Salad

India knows the secrets of yoghurt used in dishes that are used as a salad might be used outside of India. Yoghurt is mixed with vegetables and spices and the dish accompanies the meal to add nutrition, cool the heat of spices and add a creamy texture to the meal.

Here we take the idea and create a Western salad with a yoghurt base. I am sure that you will enjoy it. The salad makes a great addition to BBQs.

It is quite a tart salad, and so goes well with dishes that look for something tart to cut through their flavours – fried dishes, perhaps. But most of all, I love it with a rice dish, a pulao for example. Or for a simple lunch, just with some hot rice mixed with ghee.

Are you looking for Yoghurt dishes? Try Minty Yoghurt-Tahini Sauce and Dressing, Garlic-Yoghurt Dressing, Beetroot with Yoghurt Tahini Dressing, Sweet and Sour Mango Yoghurt Curry, and How to Make Thick Thick Yoghurt.

Or perhaps you are after Celery dishes. Try Celery Salad with Sour Grapes and Burrata, Quick Pickled Celery with Chilli, Spicy Celery Salad, Simple Celery Salads, and Pear, Celery and Fennel Salad.

You can also browse all of our Yoghurt dishes, and all of our Celery dishes. All of our Salads are here. Or simply explore our Mid Autumn dishes.

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Spicy Celery Salad

Celery sort of misses out in the salad stakes. There are not so many salads that feature celery as its core ingredient. This salad changes that, it at least puts a stake in the Celery Salad map. Asian style in flavours with a little heat, it will be a classic at your place once you have tried it.

The original recipe was inspired by The Back Yard Lemon Tree, and she credits Lottie and Doof as her inspiration.

Are you after Celery recipes? Try Celery Salad with Sour Grapes and Burrata, Quick Pickled Celery with Chilli, Celery Yoghurt Salad, Celery and Avocado Cold Soup, Nashi Pear and Celery Salad, and Simple Celery Salads.

Or try these Salads – Jicama and Green Mango Salad, Mediterranean Buckwheat Salad, and Sweet Red Pepper Salads.

You might see our other Celery Salads. Or browse all of our Salad recipes here and here. All Celery dishes are here. Or explore our easy Mid Spring recipes.

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Chickpea and Carrot Salad with a Curry Dressing

If you soak and cook some chickpeas and keep them in the freezer, you always have chickpeas for recipes that take your fancy. Or when you cook some, cook twice as many and then use them over the following week in salads, pasta sauces, bakes and other dishes.

Chickpeas are great in salads, and this is a simple, easy salad with celery and carrot – two ingredients usually in your fridge. The dressing has a bit of spice with the use of curry powder. I usually keep some Malay Curry Powder in the cupboards, for use in Malaysian dishes. If you don’t have a generic curry powder, use garam masala.

Have a look at some other Chickpea recipes: Glorious Five Bean Salad, Chickpea Tabbouleh, or Chickpea Sundal. You can also make Baked Chickpeas as a snack.

Are you looking for some Carrot Salads? Have a look at Mung Bean and Baked Carrot Salad, Carrot and Blueberry Salad, and Carrot Sambol. Also try Celery Salad with Sour Grapes and Burrata.

If you are after all Carrot recipes, look here, here for all Celery recipes, and here for all Chickpea recipes.

All of our various Salads are available here, or simply explore our Mid Summer dishes.

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Mushroom and Carrot Salad with Mung Sprouts and Ginger Vinaigrette

A modern mushroom salad

Summer is a delightful season for salads, and we should not resist playing with herbs and vegetables and fruits to create exciting combinations and exquisite dressings. This recipe is a salad that brings contrasting textures and a super vinaigrette. It is a Mushroom-Carrot Salad that exhibits gingery overtones via the perfect dressing

Similar Mushroom recipes include Mushroom Salad with Parmesan, Mushrooms a la Grecque, Caramelised Oyster Mushrooms, Grilled Mushroom and Red Onion Salad, and Stuffed Mushrooms on the BBQ/Grill.

If you are looking for Carrot Recipes, try Mung Bean and Carrot Salad, Moroccan Salad, and Carrot Thoran.

Browse all of our Carrot recipes, all of our Mushroom recipes, and our Salad recipes. We have a collection of Bittman Salads here, our Mushroom Salads are here, and Carrot Salads here. Or be inspired by our Mid Summer recipes.

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Fantastic Avocado and Celery Cold Soup

Perfect for our 40C Summers

Back from a hot weather week of family, food and fun, one of the outstanding dishes we concocted was an amazing cold blender soup with celery and avocado. Very more’ish, it takes a few minutes to make. It can be eaten either at room temperature or chilled for a perfect start to a meal on a hot hot day. Perfect for our 40C degree summers.

We have another Beautiful Cold Avocado Soup. it is just as wonderful. Try other Cold Soups too – Chilled Beetroot Soup, Roasted Tomato and Corn Cold Soup, and Tomato and Cucumber Cold Soup.

Are you an avocado fan? Try Avocado Mash with Radishes.

We have other Celery recipes too. Try Celery Yoghurt Salad, Mushroom and Carrot Salad with Celery and a Ginger Vinaigrette, and Nashi Pear and Celery Salad.

Browse our other Cold Soups, our Avocado dishes, and our Celery recipes. Or enjoy our easy Mid Summer recipes.

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Nashi Pear, Celery and Fennel Salad with Mustard Dressing and Panch Phoron Crunch

Fennel and Pears come into their own in Autumn.

Autumn brings such delightfulness in the month or two before winter sets in. Fennel comes into its own, and Nashi pears arrive. Tomatoes are delightful in the less intense heat. Fronds of mint wave in the breeze, as does lemon verbena and other herbs. I do love autumn.

This is a delightful salad that can be part of a meal, or form lunch on its own with a piece of Lebanese flatbread or pita bread.

Are you after other Fennel Salads? Try Fennel, Potato and Tomato Salad with Garlicky Mayo, Fennel and Apple Salad and Grilled Fennel with Mozzarella. Also try Fennel a la Grecque.

You might like to browse our other Salads, and all of our Fennel recipes. Read about Panch Phoron here. Or explore our Early Winter dishes.

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Spicy Crunchy Herby Salad with Asian Style Dressing

This is a salad to wake you up and enliven your senses. Fueled with chilli, then the heat is softened (a little) with herbs and crunchy ingredients, and then it is dressed with Asian ingredients.

This is a salad to wake you up and enliven your senses. Fueled with chilli, then the heat is softened (a little) with herbs and crunchy ingredients, and then it is dressed with Asian ingredients. Better than coffee, you will be full of energy in no time! 😀😘

You might also like to try Peaches with Asian Flavours, Caramelised, Marinated King Oyster Mushrooms, or Sprouted Mung Bean Sundal/Salad. Browse our Carrot Salads here, and Salads here and here. Be inspired by our Summer recipes here and here.

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Du Puy Lentil Soup | Slow Cooked or Stove Top

Du Puy Lentil Soup recipe with Parmesan Toasts or Middle Eastern Tafoon

There is a a Middle Eastern flatbread, fresh Taftoon – Persian flatbread. It can be found in any Middle Eastern store. A little like Naan, but huge, round and soft, thicker than lavash, yeasted and made from a mix of wholewheat and plant flour. Just right for soups. So to fit in one more soup before the end of winter, and to use up any du Puy lentils left in the cupboard, make a slow cooked Du Puy Lentil Soup.

Those little black disks are great in winter slow cooked soups (but can of course be cooked on the stove top too). Throw some into the slow cooker and then go to the office. Arrive home to wonderful soup and soft taftoon to mop up the juices.

Similar Recipes include Puy Lentils with Ragout of Mushrooms, and Thai Red Lentil Soup.

You might also like to browse our other Du Puy Lentil recipes. Our favourite is Du Puy Lentils with Feta and Tomato. Have a look at our Slow Cooker recipes too. Explore our Lentil Soups, and all of our Soups . Find some inspiration in our Mid Winter recipes.

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