Basic Baked Beans
For a hearty side dish, try some baked beans. Be creative and add your own twist to make the beans spicier or sweeter. This makes a great potluck dish and can be served hot or cold with other picnic dishes.
1 pound small white beans, Bob's Red Mill Small Whites, Cannellini or Navy Beans
1 yellow onion, finely diced
2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
4 garlic cloves, minced
1 tablespoon tamari
1 tablespoon black pepper
2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
2 tablespoons Organic Wizard's Worcestershire Sauce
1/3 cup organic apple cider vinegar, unfiltered
2 tablespoons Dijon mustard
1 teaspoon Cedar House Liquid Smoke
1 jalapeño pepper, finely diced
1/2 cup organic ketchup
1/2 cup organic maple syrup
1/4 up black strap molasses, unsulphured
1 tablespoon fresh ginger, grated on fine rasp
1/2 teaspoon sea salt
1 28-ounce can Muir Fire Roasted Tomatoes, diced
1 tablespoon adobo sauce from canned chipotle peppers
12 ounce bottle of O'Doul's Amber nonalcoholic beer
optional: 1 tablespoon "adobo sauce" from canned chipotle peppers and a whole chipotle pepper if you like HEAT!
BUY Muir Glen Organic Diced Adobo Fire Roasted Tomato ( 12x14.5 OZ)
BUY Muir Glen Organic Diced Tomatoes, Fire Roasted, 14.5-Ounce Cans (Pack of 12)
BUY Cedar House Ultra-Premium Liquid Smoke:
All Natural Hickory Liquid Smoke - 4 FL OZ
Vita-Mix 5200, Bamix or Cuisinart Elite
heavy bottomed skillet
heavy bottomed bean pot with lid
measuring cup and spoons
The Bean Check
Check beans by pouring them one cup at a time into a plate to find any broken beans or stones or dirt that may be hiding... yes, you must do this step to prevent biting into a small pebble stone.
Pick out any beans that are shriveled, broken, or misshaped.
The Bean Soak
Rinse the beans in cold water a few times and then cover with twice the amount of water and let them soak for at least 12 hours.
The beans will drink up most of the water and double in volume.
In the morning or 12 hours later, drain the remaining liquid off the beans and rinse under cold water several times to eliminate all the soaking water and any discoloration from the soaking process.
The Bean Precook
Put the soaked beans into a large pot and cover with water about 1 inch over the beans... cook for about 1 1/2 hours or until al dente... tender, but not soft and mushy.
It may be necessary to add a bit more water depending on the cook time involved. Do not add too much, add only enough to keep the beans covered. Less water will provide a better tasting bean.
Once the beans come to a boil, they will produce a layer of FOAM! Turn the heat down and gently skim all the foam from the top and discard.
Turn the pot down to a simmer and cover the pan.
After Bean "FOAM" Removal
Drained and Cooked White Beans
Cook Diced Onions to Translucent
Saute the Onions
Use a heavy bottomed fry pan over medium heat and sauté the diced onions in the olive oil till translucent.
Remove the cooked onions from the heat and set aside.
The Baked Bean Sauce
Place all the Sauce ingredients into the Vita-Mix 5200 and blend till perfectly smooth.
Pour the blended Sauce into a small sauce pan and bring to a simmer.
Remove from heat and set aside.
Drain the Bean Liquid
Drain off all the bean cooking liquid and pour the Sauce over the drained and cooked beans. Gently fold the Sauce into the beans until every bean is covered with the aromatic sauce.
Fold the sautéed onions into the beans.
Cover the baking dish or pot with a lid and bake the beans for 4 hours in an oven set at 225 degrees F. Then remove the lid and cook for another hour to give the beans a splendid crusty top to the pot.
GOURMET HINT: Cast iron and enameled cast iron pots are an excellent choice for baking beans in the oven or on the stovetop.
BUY the Lodge L8DOL3 Pre-Seasoned Cast-Iron Dutch Oven with Dual Handles, 5-Quart
It was too hot today to turn on the oven, so I cooked the beans on low on the stovetop. I gave the contents a stir every 30 minutes or so and cooked the beans uncovered till all the sauce had been absorbed... approximately 5 hours. I live at an elevation of 5000 feet, so baking beans takes longer than at sea level. The finished baked beans should be soft with some sauce for moisture. If the beans taste dry, add a little water and stir gently.
HINT: If your beans begin to drink up too much of the sauce, you can thin them out with a bit of Imagine No-Chicken Broth... some like their Baked Beans creamer, others like them drier.
Basic Vegan Baked Beans, Crispy Coleslaw, and Creamy Potato Salad make an easy weekend of lunches or cool light evening meals. Add a grilled Match Meat Crab Cakes, an American Hamburger, or any favorite meal and it's a PARTY!
How to Cook Dried Beans
French Lentil Bourguignon