Butter Beans and Olives in Spicy Red Sauce

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In keeping with yesterday’s post on simple, beautiful things, the other night I made an old favorite for dinner:butter beans in spicy red sauce

Like songs, I associate certain foods with certain people, times and/or places, and it took me a long while to be able to make this again. Haha yeah, glad that was only temporary. This is too good to “belong” to any one person/place/thing. It belongs on my dinner table. And yours. Here’s a streamlined version of the recipe:


  • 1 tsp olive oil
  • 4 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 15-oz can butter beans
  • 1 15-oz can diced tomatoes (no salt added)
  • ~1/8 c oil cured olives, chopped
  • dried basil
  • 1 tsp red pepper flakes


  1. Heat olive oil in a saucepan.
  2. Add garlic, sauté until fragrant (~3 minutes).
  3. Add tomatoes, beans, and spices. Stir to incorporate.
  4. Bring to a boil, then reduce heat and simmer 15-20 minutes.

I served mine over steamed kale and added some herbed feta on top. You could also do this with couscous, quinoa, brown rice, or other grain. Goat cheese is a great substitute for feta here—I just happen to be on a feta kick.

Are there any foods—or songs, for that matter—you associate with a particular person, time or place? 

2 thoughts on “Butter Beans and Olives in Spicy Red Sauce

    Emily said:
    September 28, 2013 at 4:06 pm

    This sounds so, so delicious and looks so simple. I definitely will be trying this!

    Jess responded:
    September 29, 2013 at 1:43 am


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