‘Empedrat’ with Ganxet beans, figs and tuna belly
Empedrat is a type of bean salad, typical to Catalonia. Ganxet beans are an indigenous variety of white beans from Catalonia
250g of cooked Ganxet beans
1 medium onion, 1/2 red pepper; 1/2 yellow pepper (optional)
2 or 3 raf or beef tomatoes, Salt and white pepper, Extra virgin olive oil
Apple or red fruit vinegar (Optional)
12 firm or very ripe figs
2 cans of good quality tuna belly
The night before, put the dried beans in a pot with ½ onion, 2 cloves, a piece of carrot, bay leaf and 4 peppercorns, cover it with cold water (3 times the volume of the beans) and let it soak for about 8 hours. Once soaked simmer for an hour and a half on low heat, if needed add cold water so that they continue simmering gently. Once cooked season with salt, remove from the heat and cool down.
Chop the onion, peppers and peeled and deseeded tomatoes. Place everything in a bowl, mix with the cooked, drained beans, season with olive oil, salt white pepper and just a little vinegar.
There are two ways to add the figs, if they are ripe you can peel them and mash with a fork to obtain a puree and use it to top the dish or if you are using firm and green figs, wash and quarter them and use them in a decorative way.
Arrange the bean salad with the mashed figs and the tuna belly playing with the colors for a pleasing presentation, decorate with chopped chives and some quartered figs, finish with a good dash of olive oil.
The Ganxet beans in this salad could be replaced with other beans, or chickpeas, also canned ones. The tuna could be replaced with salted cod (previously desalinated) and paired with another fruit.
Dried beans have a lot of soluble fiber, the best one for lowering cholesterol, they are also rich in potassium, carbohydrates and protein; by mixing with fish and raw vegetables we improve the absorption of iron and its protein profile. The skin of the bean contains phaseolamin, a substance that is used as a nutritional supplement to reduce the carbohydrate absorption interesting for diabetics and weight loss.