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Italian-style runner beans

This recipe makes wonderful use of seasonal runner beans. Served hot or cold, it takes its inspiration from traditional ratatouille.


  • 1 lb / 450g young runner beans
  • 5 tablespoons olive oil
  • 6 tomatoes
  • 1 teaspoon tomato puree
  • 1 clove garlic, crushed handful of freshly torn basil leaves
  • 2 teaspoons caster sugar
  • Season with Salt & pepper


  1. Skin and deseed the tomatoes, then chop them roughly. Cut the runner beans into ½ inch pieces, on the diagonal
  2. Heat olive oil in a large pan, then add the chopped runner beans, stirring, to coat them all with oil
  3. Add the chopped tomatoes, puree, garlic, salt, pepper and sugar. Cook uncovered, over a low heat for 30 minutes, stirring occasionally.
  4. Add the chopped basil at the last minute. Stir through and serve immediately. (Alternatively, leave to cool, stir in two teaspoons of white wine vinegar and serve as a salad.)


6 people