Day 1 – Turkish White Bean and Beef Stew (Kuru Fasulye)

As I explained a while ago, I recently had the very pleasant task of using up corned beef in a week of enjoyable leftover meals.

It was glorious.

While I’ve had this recipe for a while, it called for slices of pastrami and not roast beef. Thick with beans, tomatoes and a rich roast capsicum paste, it seemed to me an ideal vessel for shreds of corned beef. So I tried it and it was good.

Now of course, if you don’t fancy using corned beef, slices of pastrami from the deli are perfectly wonderful, or you can use braeseola or very thin slices of cured beef. Best of all you can easily adapt this recipe to make half the quantity or double it up depending on how many are eating. It’s the last word in cheap and cheerful eating. And I mean that more literally than you might think.

Turkish White Bean and Beef Stew

Serves 4


  • 2 tbsp olive oil
  • 2 red capsicum
  • 2 onions, sliced in half and then sliced thinly
  • 2 cloves garlic, finely sliced
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 2 x 400g tins cannellini beans, rinsed and drained
  • 2 x 400g tins crushed tomatoes
  • sea salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • 200g thinly sliced pastrami or braeseola or cured beef or 2-3 cups shredded cooked corned beef


Pre-heat oven to 200°C

Place the capsicum in a small roasting dish and drizzle with half the oil. Roast for 40 minutes until their skins are blackened and blistered. Place them in a plastic bag, twist them shut and allow them to steam for 5 minutes. When they are cool enough to handle rub the skins off and cut the capsicums in to thin strips.

Reduce oven temperature to 180°C

Heat remaining oil in a frypan over medium heat. Sauté the onions and garlic for 5-8 minutes until the onions soften. Add the bay leaf, drained beans, capsicum strips, tomatoes and 1 ½ cups (375ml) water. Stir to combine.

If you are cooking on a stove: Lay the shredded corned beef or slices of pastrami over the top of the beans. Cover the pot with a tight fitting lid, reduce the heat to the lowest setting possible and simmer for 40 minutes.

If you are using the oven: Place the casserole mixture into a casserole dish. Lay the strips of beef over the top of the casserole, then cover with a tight fitting lid or foil. Bake for 40 minutes.

Serve with crusty bread or a pilaf or a green salad.


$12.50 for four generous serves. Less if using leftover corned beef.

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