Saturday, August 11, 2012

Sweet & Spicy Baked Beans

Beans, beans, the magical fruit.  The more ya eat, the more ya . . . well . . . .you know.  While we all know gas is an unpleasant side effect of the tasty lil' treasures we still eat enjoy every spoonful.  In our house we always have canned beans, pork n beans, baked beans, and chili on hand.  I have always had aspirations of making my own but for some reason I felt really intimidated.  So, I did a little research on cooking beans, gathered my favorite baked bean flavors, and went to town.  Turns out bean town is easy to get to and sooo worth making your own!

Sweet & Spicy Beans
  • 1lb bag of dried white beans 
  • 1 ham hock (you could use bacon or ham if opposed to "hockin" it up)
  • 1 white onion, diced
  • 1 green bell pepper, diced
  • 1 jalepeno, sliced (i remove seeds to keep the heat down but feel free to crank it up!)
  • 1 cup molasses
  • 3/4 cup ketchup
  • tbsp liquid smoke
  • tbsp salt
  • 2 tbsp ground black pepper
I am really sorry for the lack of pictures!!!  I had a total pregnant moment and barely remembered to snap any before I wolfed it down!
Start by soaking the beans. The, pour beans in a bowl and pick out any debris or funky beans. Cover with about 3 inches of water and let sit on the counter for 3-4 hrs (I didn't soak overnight and it the beans cooked beautifully). Dump beans lovingly into a strainer and rinse.  Transfer to a large pot or dutch oven, fill with water 2 inches above beans, and add the ham hock (or ham/bacon). Cover and let simmer for about 2 hours.  While the beans are simmering cut up veggies.  In a small bowl add the molasses, ketchup, and liquid smoke.  Mix well and taste (adjust to your liking).  Stir the veggies and sauce into the beans.  Add salt n peppa and start to shoop.  And by shoop I mean combine well and cover for additional 1 1/2 to 2 hrs (I was hip in the 90's, word to yo mutha).  You can tell it's done when the beans are tender and swimming in a delicious, thick gravy.  I served it over Johnny Cake but feel free to eat yo beans how you like.


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