Doesn’t that fuzzy picture make you want to eat some? My camera batteries decided to die tonight at dinner, and the backups were nowhere to be found. That’s life sometimes. But back to the food…
Do you have any fun memories associated with baked beans, like a summertime picnic or dinner at Grandma’s house?
My husband fondly remembers eating “beans and wieners” as a child – baked beans with chopped up hot dogs mixed in, for the unschooled. In fact, he’d been craving this meal for so long that I finally broke down about a month ago and bought some nitrate-free hot dogs and bacon for the express purpose of recreating his salivatory memory.
The baked beans came out so well that I’ve made them three times in the last month. So I guess it’s time to share! This recipe is adapted from one in Peace, Love, and Barbecue by Mike and Amy Mills.
1 ½ lbs dried white beans (Great Northern, cannellini, navy, etc)
8 strips of bacon (nitrate-free)
1 small onion, diced
2-3 cloves garlic, minced
2 cups ketchup (organic, no HFCS)
½ cup molasses
¾ cup muscovado or brown sugar
2 tbsp prepared mustard
1-2 tbsp Worcestershire sauce
2 tsp chili powder
2 tsp paprika
2 tsp sea salt, finely ground
2 tsp pepper
1. Rinse the beans and soak for at least 12 hours (overnight), 24 hours if you have the time. Drain the soaking water, then cook the beans in a crockpot on low all day or in a large pan on the stove (about two hours).
2. When beans are closed to being tender, cook the bacon in a skillet. Once the bacon is fully cooked, remove it from the skillet and sauté the onions and garlic in the bacon grease until onion starts to change color (this won’t take long). Remove from heat and let sit until the next step is completed.
3. In a medium-sized bowl, mix together remaining ingredients, plus the onion, garlic, and bacon grease from step two. If you want to crumple the bacon, add it in at this step (otherwise, you can wait until it goes in the pan).
4. Drain off most of the cooking water from the beans (you’ll want to leave a little bit to mix in with the mixture in step three), then go ahead and combine everything in the bean pot. After it is mixed together thoroughly, pour into a 9×13 baking dish and cook in a pre-heated oven at 400 degrees until bubbly.
Note: You could definitely cook it at a different temperature – I just chose 400 because that was the temperature my cornbread needed. You are going to eat cornbread with this, right?