Lemon Potatoes With Beans and Feta. Photo by Tom McCorkle for The Washington Post.
Lemon Potatoes With Beans and Feta. Photo by Tom McCorkle for The Washington Post.

RECIPE: Lemon potatoes with beans and feta

By Ellie Krieger Time of article published Jun 5, 2020

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When I was a kid, if you asked me what my favourite food was, I'd emphatically reply, "Potatoes!" French fried, baked, roasted, boiled, however they were prepared I was all in, and that spud love rings true today. 

Although they are technically a vegetable, from a nutritional point of view I consider potatoes to be a starch (or "carb" in the vernacular), one that is minimally processed and nutrient-rich, packed with filling fibre, vitamin C and potassium.

One of my all-time favourite potato dishes, Greek lemon potatoes, is so satisfying to me that I have always said, jokingly, that I could make a meal of it. Well, here I actually did. In the traditional Greek dish, the potatoes are roasted in a bath of lemon juice, olive oil and water, until the liquid is reduced to a glaze, the spuds absorb the tangy citrus flavour and become soft and creamy inside and delightfully browned outside. Often, they are sprinkled with fragrant dried oregano as well.

This recipe starts that way (albeit with a more modest amount of oil than is often used), but to make the dish a complete meal, before the potatoes are completely cooked, I toss some fresh green beans as well as a can of butter beans into the pan. As the dish continues to roast, the green beans become crisp-tender, the butter beans firm up and brown a bit, and they both marry with the potatoes in the lemony liquid. I like to use butter beans here because they are similar to the big, meaty Gigante beans common in Greek cuisine, but any white bean will work, such as cannellini or Navy.

As a final, flavourful flourish, I crumble briny feta over everything, for an enticing Mediterranean, one-pan vegetarian meal (or a side for fish, poultry or meat) that indulges that potato passion in a healthful way.

Lemon Potatoes with Beans and Feta (Serves 4-6)

Ingredients

5 medium potatoes (680g), unpeeled and quartered lengthwise into wedges
1/4 cup olive oil
1/3 cup fresh lemon juice (from 1 1/2 large lemons)
1/3 cup water
3/4 teaspoon kosher salt, divided
230g green beans, or haricots verts, trimmed
One (425g) can butter beans or another white bean, such as cannellini, drained and rinsed
1 1/2 teaspoons dried oregano
1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
1/3 cup crumbled feta cheese (60g)

Method

Position a baking rack in the middle of the oven and preheat to 230 degrees.
Place the potatoes into a 23-by-33-cm rimmed baking dish. Pour the oil, lemon juice and water over the potatoes and sprinkle them with 1/2 teaspoon of the salt. Transfer to the oven and roast for 15 minutes. Using tongs, flip the potatoes and return them to the oven to roast 15 to 20 minutes more, until the potatoes are easily pierced with a fork and browned in spots.
Add the green beans, butter beans, oregano, pepper and the remaining 1/4 teaspoon salt to the dish with the potatoes and toss to combine and to coat the beans with the remaining oil in the pan. Return the dish to the oven for about 8 minutes, or until the green beans are crisp-tender. Sprinkle with the feta cheese and serve.

The Washington Post

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