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Mad Hunky Beans with Bacon and Smoked Sausage

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TasunkaWitko View Drop Down
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    Posted: 13 September 2012 at 14:28
Mad Hunky Beans with Bacon and Smoked Sausage
 
 
 
When he posted his recipe, showing just how simple it is to get wonderful, interesting flavour - perfect for a Labour-Day barbecue - I was hooked and decided to try a version of them the very next day.
 
As you can see by following the link above, Dave's version used small white beans, thick-sliced homemade bacon and Portuguese chouriço sausage; I made some necessary substitutions due to availability. For the beans, I used pinto beans, going with a more western profile. Since I couldn't get my hands on any thick-sliced bacon that day (the curse of living in a small town) I went with "regular-sliced" bacon that I had on hand, but it was apple-smoked, so that was a point in its favour. Not having chouriço anywhere near me at all, I simply used a rather plain-jane "smoked beef sausage" from Hillshire Farm, adding a few minced garlic cloves to bring in a little flavour. Finally, I went whole-hog and probably tripled the amount of Mad Hunky - for no other reason than to get the good stuff in there.
 
I also tried a couple of different twists where the method was concerned. First, I soaked the pinto beans overnight, rather than using the "quick-cook" method - no big deal there. More importantly, I browned and rendered out the sausage and bacon chunks - and carmelised the onion - before putting everything together for the oven; the minced garlic cloves also spent some time sweating out in the pan with the onions. Finally, at the request of the beautiful Mrs. Tas, I added a cup or so of ketchup during the last hour of cooking.
 
Here's an ingredients list and summary of the method:
 
2 pounds dry pinto beans
1 large onion, diced
3 to 4 garlic cloves, minced
1 pound bacon (preferably thick-sliced), cut into pieces
1 pound smoked sausage
3/4 cup blackstrap molasses
1/3 cup dark brown sugar
1 teaspoon powdered mustard
1 cup ketchup
 
Sort the beans, then soak them overnight. The next day, strain the beans - reserving the soaking water - and transfer them to a large Dutch oven or casserole. Chop your onion, mince your garlic, then cut your bacon and sausage into pieces.
 
Brown the bacon and sausage over medium heat in a heavy skillet, gradually reducing the heat, until nearly all the fat is rendered. Scoop out the bacon and sausage, add them to the beans, and then remove all but a tablespoon or two of the fat. Carmelise the diced onion over medium heat, stirring often, adding the garlic during the last two or three minutes. Add the onion and garlic to the beans. Add the rest of the ingredients to the beans, except the ketchup. Stir the beans to mix everything well, then cover with the reserved soaking water, adding more if necessary, until the beans are covered with an inch or two of water.
 
Stir again, bring to a boil on the stovetop and then place in a 300-degree oven for 5 to 7 hours, checking the liquid level every hour or so and adding water to keep the beans covered. Add the ketchup during the last hour or so of cooking. The beans will be done when they are tender and soft; when they are done, cook uncovered for a while if necessary to reduce the sauce and serve.
 
Here are the results, which look great to me:

And here they are, served up with some spare ribs that I had barbecued using a home-made Greek-inspired rub:

There were no complaints at all - the beans were outstanding! Good and saucy - sweet, tart and just spicy enough to make them very interesting. No one flavour overpowered the dish, and all worked well together:

All the more reason to drop by www.madhunkymeats.com and give Rich's outstanding products a try!

I can only imagine how good they would have been with thicker-sliced bacon, since the thin bacon I used pretty much disintegrated into the beans; be that as it may, They were wonderful all-around! 
 
Thank you, Dave - for the inspiration to give this a shot. I've never been too successful with beans, but these were simple, right out fo the gate, and tasted wonderful!
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Margi Cintrano View Drop Down
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Margi Cintrano Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 14 September 2012 at 06:10
Tas,
 
Phenomenal adaption on Hoser´s recipe.
 
Would like to prepare however, it is still a bit too warm here ( 75 -80 farenheit ). Shall put it in the new notebook called FOW RECIPES FOR AUTUMN AND WINTER ...
 
All my very best for a lovely wkend.
Marge
 
 
 
 
Volamos a Mediterraneo, un paraiso que conquista su gente u su cocina.
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