Welcome to Spring! And.. its snowing… again… in fact, there’s a snowfall warning!
But, let’s look on the bright side- what better excuse for some comfort food.
I got home and I was craving Baked Beans… and though I have 4 cans of readymade baked beans in the pantry, that wouldn’t cut it. I wanted real baked beans, hot from the oven… sweet, savory, and filling. Full of protein. Combined with a crispy buttered (or margarine-ed) bun, perhaps a crisp salad or coleslaw, and a good beer, it really warms you up on a chilly day.
So I checked the cookbooks for a ‘quick’ version of baked beans that I could make with canned beans, as there was, unfortunately no time to soak and cook dried beans. I found only one recipe and it was for ‘baked beans with bacon’, which obviously, did not cut it for a non-pig flesh eater. That’s okay, I don’t like to follow recipes to a tee anyway. I had some black & kidney beans, a cast iron dutch oven, and a bunch of homebrew waiting in the wings.
Quicker Baked Beans with Beer
Preheat oven to 350
Combine in a baking dish, such as a dutch oven (deeper rather than shallower):
- Approx 3 cups of cooked, canned beans, rinsed well (I used white kidney and black beans.. feel free to experiment)
- 1/4c ketchup
- 1/2c minced onion
- 2 garlic cloves, minced
- 2 Tbsp molasses (natural, unsulphured if possible)
- 2 Tbsp brown sugar
- 1 Tbsp Soy sauce
- A squirt of hot sauce
- A squirt of olive oil
- 1/2 c beer (I used a home-brewed amber ale. This also leaves you a bit to whet your appetite while the beans bake)
- 1 Tbsp of vegetarian bacon bits (available in most grocery stores)
- Freshly ground pepper & Salt to taste
- Your choice of herbs & spices (optional)… I have an organic ‘no salt’ organic herb mix from costco…
Mix well. The beauty of this dish is you can mix it right in the baking vessel. I used my enameled cast iron dutch oven. If you don’t have one, man they are a blessing! They cook everything so beautifully, without drying out.
Bake for 40 min with lid on. Stir.
If too dry, add more beer!
Remove lid and bake for another 10-20 min
And if you’ve now got a hankering for some good beer, check out the LCSA International Beer & Music Festival at the College Barn this Thursday. Featuring the following beers:
North Coast Old Rasputin Russian Imperial Stout
Saison Dupont Vieille Provision
Baird Rising Sun Pale Ale
Harviestoun Old Engine Oil
Central City Red Racer India Pale Ale
Wild Rose India Pale Ale
Hacker Pschorr Hefe Weisse