1 pound of dried beans - gigantes or Royal Corona from Rancho Gordo
1 cup extra virgin olive oil
2 medium onions - diced
1/3 cup garlic - minced
3/4 cup fresh parsley - chopped
1/4 cup fresh mint - chopped
1 tablespoon dried oregano
1 tablespoon salt
2 teaspoons ground black pepper
1 28 ounce can of crushed tomatoes
2 cups reserved cooking water from beans
1 cup filtered water
Rinse the beans, and remove any large debris. Soak the beans in plenty of filtered water for at least 6 hours. Place the beans and soaking water into a large pot, adding plenty of filtered water to cover and bring to a boil. Boil for 45 minutes, adding more hot water from a tea kettle, if necessary. Reserve 2 cups of the bean cooking water.
Sauté the onion in olive oil over medium until tender and translucent. Add the garlic and cook for a few minutes until fragrant. Add the fresh herbs and spices and cook for a few minutes to release the flavor. Add the can of tomatoes (do not drain) and cook until the color deepens--about 5 minutes. Add the reserved bean water and bring to a boil.
In a large casserole dish (9 x 13), ladle some sauce in the bottom. Arrange the beans on top and then pour the remaining tomato sauce over the beans. Pour one cup of filtered water into the casserole dish. Bake uncovered for 2 hours in a 350 degree oven, stirring every 30 minutes.
If you can resist, allow the beans to rest for 30 minutes after baking so that the sauce has time to thicken. I have a hard time resisting and usually want to dig in right away because the smells are so glorious. We serve this over rice.