My grandma used to make baked beans that my dad would go gaga over. I personally thought they were disgusting. That may have been because they were probably born out of bacon fat renderings. So, you probably understand what I’m talking about. Of course, like most great family recipes they aren’t exactly written down. If someone doesn’t honor the family secret by being taught the family recipe, then it dies with the great inventor. Now, I didn’t like those beans particularly, but I am a fan of baked beans. I mean, what holiday would survive a lack of a delicious baked bean? Certainly not July 4th. While most baked beans have an animal fat as the star of the show, Oh She Glows took out the animal and added an extra dose of Canada via Maple Syrup (who doesn’t love a dose of Canadian PM Justin Trudeau?). I give you fresh from the Crockpot, Maple Baked Beans.
4.5 cups cooked navy or northern beans (approx. 3 (15-ounce) small cans -without liquid). In this picture I used 5C northern beans from the glass jars in the grocery.
1 large sweet onion, diced
3-4 tbsp blackstrap molasses
3 tbsp maple syrup
2 tablespoons regular mustard
2 tablespoons apple cider vinegar
8 oz/1 cup canned diced tomatoes without liquid
1 teaspoon fine grain sea salt
Handful of dried cranberries or cherries
I dumped all of these items into the Crockpot. If you want a little sweeter onion flavor, brown the onions and let them reduce on the stove then add to the Crockpot. Don’t forget to rinse and drain your beans or good luck to you as you eat baked bean soup. I cooked these overnight on low and then for another 6 hours on high the following day to get a richer, thicker liquid. It didn’t burn or impact the bean texture much. I love how this recipe doesn’t call for ketchup or brown sugar. These flavors are so much more earthy and smoked.
Directions from original author – Slow-cooker method: Add cooked and drained beans into the slow cooker. Chop the onion and place the onion, molasses, maple syrup, mustard, vinegar, salt, tomatoes, and cranberries (optional) into the slow cooker and stir well. (Alternatively you can also cook these on the stove top or baked in the oven!). Cook over high heat for about 4-5 hours (however they can be eaten after just a couple hours of cooking), or cook them on the lowest heat setting for 7-8 hours. Make sure to check the beans frequently as I am not sure if this mixture will burn. After scooping into bowls, scoop on a bit of maple butter or drizzle pure maple syrup on top. Serves 3-4.
I’m sure this is old new to most of you, because I haven’t shut up about Horrocks for about 3 weeks now since my first visit to the grocer in Kentwood. My best find to date, besides their seed packets that are 40% “basically every day” according to the butcher in line behind me, is the Michigan grown lentils, peas and beans.
So what in the world do you do with dried beans? Well, you soak them on a Saturday night over night, then get up on Sunday and cook them about 70% done (while you are ironing or doing laundry) drain, dry, cool and freeze in bags to add during the work week to delicious stoups, soups, stews, tacos, casseroles, curries, etc. They will finish cooking in the pot of whatever delicious finished item you create. Why do this? Less sodium, a better quality, whole bean in your dish, AND they are CHEAP! From one bag of great northern beans, dried, I got 9 ziploc bags of cooked beans (2C per bag) to enjoy.
Now if you will excuse me, I’m off to make a lentil stew with white beans from a local grower, surely by this time, you know who I am referring to. Eat. More. Dried. Beans. Save a few bucks, help a local grower, and serve a higher quality product. Oh, and cross your fingers that Horrocks will hire me part-time this summer to feed my foodie addiction; I applied today.
The theme song to Dinner and A Movie with Paul and Annabell on USA Network was THIS. It would be stuck in my mind for DAYS!!! I regressed and began singing it while making chili and promptly wanted to leap off a cliff. Hope you suffer as much as I did. 🙂 For your misery, a cornbread recipe. BEANS AND CORNBREAD!
1 C yellow cornmeal
1 C sifted all-purp flour
2 T sugar
4 t baking powder
1/2 t salt
1 C skim milk
1/3 C reduced fat sour cream
1/4 C veg oil
2 T chopped jalapenos
Preheat oven to 425, place cast iron skillet inside while warming up, buttered.
In a medium bowl, combine cornmeal, flour, sugar, baking powder, and salt. To this mixture, add egg, milk, sour cream, oil and jalapenos, mix until smooth. Pour into prepared hot pan. Bake until golden, about 20 minutes.
Recipe is a combo of many from Ina Garten, Paula Deen and Gourmet Magazine.