Baked Beans

2016-01-28 17.40.41RECIPE #179, DAY #216

ORIGINAL RECIPE: From the text of “Greene’s Bean Victory,” Bert Greene’s Kitchen, Bert Greene*

TIMING: 1 hour, 20 minutes

DIFFICULTY: Easy

TOOLS: Just a nice stovetop to oven pot. Enameled cast iron is nice

COOK TYPE: Stovetop and oven

HEALTH: Sure, they’re sweet and christened with bacon fat, but they’re also beans. Since most Americans are woefully under-legumes. I find baked beans–what I call “sweet beans”–a great place for most people to start.

2016-01-28 17.36.14EXPERIENCE: This is absolutely not a new recipe for me. I love baked beans, so I do keep my taste bubs open for other recipes–especially those made from dried beans–but I am also happy right where I am. This recipe hails from my absolute favorite cookbook author, Bert Greene. His books are out of print, so you have to catch them used, but when I find them I buy them. This recipe was right at the front of Bert Greene’s Kitchen, a book I found in a used book store on a much needed date night that involved Duke Homestead and The Black Keyes.

Seriously, try this.

NOTES: The original recipe calls for only 1 can of beans, but I find that the sauce can easily cover 2 cans.

***

  1. Preheat oven to 350F.
  2. In a small bowl, combine 1/2 cup brown sugar, 2 tablespoons brown mustard, 2 tablespoons ketchup, 1 tablespoon molasses, 2 teaspoons sweet paprika, 2 teaspoons Sriracha, 1/2 teaspoon salt and 1/2 teaspoon ground black pepper. Set aside.
  3. In an enameled cast iron pot, cook 3-4 chopped slices bacon until crispy. Remove bacon and set aside. Also remove all but 1 tablespoon bacon grease.
  4. In the grease cook 1 diced onion until softened and beginning to brown. Add the brown sugar mixture and stir until sugar has dissolved. This only takes a minute.
  5. Remove from heat and add 2 cans drained white beans (such as navy).
  6. Bake for 1 hour, until bubbly and crusted over with brown. Serve topped with the reserved bacon.

Serve with something as homey as toast and fried eggs, or with a backyard picnic of dogs and burgers, coleslaw, various salads, and plenty of sweet tea and beer.

*Recipe changed from the original.

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