In saucepan, bring beans, water, vegetables and herbs to a boil, lower the heat and simmer for 1 hour and 15 minutes. Meanwhile, prepare the lamb.
Heat oil in skillet. Sprinkle meat with pepper and dredge in flour. Add the meat to the skillet and brown on all sides. Remove the meat to a plate, and add the onions, garlic and salt to the skillet. Stir and cook for 3 minutes. Add the tomatoes with juices, tomato paste and water and return the meat to the skillet. Add the bay leaf and half the thyme leaves. Bring to a boil, cover and lower the heat. Simmer for 1½ hours or until the lamb is tender, stirring occasionally. Then remove and discard the bay leaf.