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Serves: 6
Preparation time: 30 minutes
Cooking time: 3 hours
Total time:  3 hours 30 minutes


  • 1 cup dried kidney beans
    1/2 cup dried cannellini beans
    1/2 cup dried great northern or navy beans
    2 sprigs fresh thyme
    1 tablespoon cumin seeds
    3 tablespoons olive oil
    1 large onion, chopped
    1 carrot, chopped
    1 jalapeño pepper, seeded and chopped
    2 cloves garlic, chopped
    1/2 cup crushed canned tomatoes
    4 ripe plum tomatoes, diced
    1/4 cup maple syrup
    1/4 cup light brown sugar
    1 bay leaf
    Grated rind of 1 orange
    1/2 teaspoon crushed black peppercorns
    1/3 cup chopped fresh coriander leaves
    1/4 cup cider vinegar, or more, to taste
    Salt to taste


  • Place all beans in a bowl, cover with water to a depth of 2 inches. Add thyme and soak at least 4 hours.
    Heat a heavy 3-quart casserole. Add cumin seeds, and cook, stirring, until they dance around and smell toasty. Remove them. Add the oil, onion, carrot to casserole, and saute over medium heat 10 minutes. Stir in the jalapeño, garlic and toasted cumin seeds.
    Preheat to 250 degrees. Drain beans, and add them along with the canned and fresh tomatoes, maple syrup, brown sugar, bay leaf, orange rind and crushed peppercorns.
    Stir in all but 1 tablespoon of the coriander, and add 3 cups of water. Cover, and bring to a slow simmer.
    Place in the oven, and cook 2 hours. Add vinegar and salt to taste. Return to the oven 2 1/2 hours longer, until the liquid has been absorbed, but the beans are still moist.
    Adjust seasonings, adding more vinegar and salt if needed. Sprinkle the remaining coriander, and serve.
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