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Radicchio, Grape and Balsamic Tray Bake with Bean and Rosemary Puree

Serves 2 / Ready in 40 minutes


    Radicchio, Grape and Balsamic Tray Bake with Bean and Rosemary Puree

    It is truly amazing what you can do with a couple of cans of beans. Their versatility was unveiled to me when I visited a friend who had just returned from a trip to Sardinia; she told me about a meal she had enjoyed in a simple taverna on the beach one summer’s evening. She wanted to recreate it in her kitchen back in London with me, so we did—and I have to thank her for this magic recipe.


    Flageolet beans are a member of the haricot bean family; they are picked before the beans are ripe and retain their green color, and they are even more flavorful than a regular cannellini or haricot bean. You can buy them pre-cooked in cans in most grocery stores, or you can substitute with butter beans or any other white bean you like.


    Radicchio, Grape and Balsamic Tray Bake with Bean and Rosemary Puree


    Tray bake
    • 1 head radicchio
    • 1 fennel bulb, finely sliced
    • 2 bunches red grapes, about 7 oz in total
    • 2 Tbsp extra-virgin olive oil
    • 2 Tbsp balsamic vinegar
    • 1 tsp dried thyme (or leaves from 3 sprigs thyme)
    • Sea salt and cracked black pepper
    Bean puree
    • 1 sprig rosemary, leaves only
    • 2 - 14 oz cans flageolet beans, drained and rinsed
    • 1/2 vegetable stock cube
    • 1 Tbsp extra-virgin olive oil


    Per serving:

    • calories465
    • protein15g
    • fat17g
    • carbs69g
      • sugar21g
      • fiber13g
    • sodium236mg



    Preheat oven to 350 F.


    Make the tray bake: Halve head of radicchio, then cut each half into four sections. Trim base and a little of the white heart from each piece without letting sections fall apart. Place on baking sheet. Scatter fennel slices over top of radicchio, then add grape bunches to baking sheet. Pour olive oil and balsamic vinegar over top, then scatter thyme leaves over as well. Season with salt and pepper. Bake in preheated oven for 30 minutes, or until grape skins have split and radicchio and fennel are soft.


    Make the bean puree: In the meantime, place all bean puree ingredients in blender or food processor with 2/3 cup boiling water and blend on high speed until smooth. Taste for seasoning.


    To serve, place dollop of bean puree in center of each of 2 plates, then spoon baked vegetables over top. Drizzle balsamic juices from baking sheet over top of each plate and enjoy immediately.


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    B12-rich mussels are a very good and economical source of protein and iron. Steamed mussels are a classic way to enjoy seafood—and so is this rich, aromatic broth of tomato, fennel, and saffron. Be sure to allow saffron to fully infuse to get the full flavour benefit, and finish off the dish with the fragrant fennel fronds. Sustainability status Farmed mussels are considered highly sustainable due to their low impacts on the environment. They are easy to harvest, require no fertilizer or fresh water, and don’t need to be fed externally, as they get all their nutritional requirements from their marine environment. Mussel prep Selection: Look for mussels with shiny, tightly closed shells that smell of the sea. If shells are slightly open, give them a tap. Live mussels will close immediately. Storage: Keep mussels in the fridge in a shallow pan laid on top of ice. Keep them out of water and cover with a damp cloth. Ideally, consume on the day you buy them, but within two days. They need to breathe, so never keep them in a sealed plastic bag. Cleanup: In addition to being sustainable, farmed mussels tend to require less cleaning than wild mussels. Most of the fibrous “beards” that mussels use to grip solid surfaces will have been removed before sale. But if a few remain, they’re easily dispatched: grasp the beard with your thumb and forefinger and pull it toward the hinge of the mussel and give it a tug. Afterward, give mussels a quick rinse and scrub away any areas of mud or seaweed, which, with farmed mussels, will require minimal work.