Sunday, January 27, 2013

Preparing home-made baked beans

Despite living in a so-called global market, there are quite a few food-stuffs that we liked from the UK that are difficult to find or very expensive compared to the prices we were used to. In general you learn to live without certain items as there are so many other foods and dishes that compensate or similar ingredients that you can use in an adapted recipe.

Home-made stock 'cubes' ready for freezing

Convenience food is useful to us as it allows more time to get on with the many activities and jobs we have to do on a day-to-day basis. One convenient and healthy food we now eat regularly is home made baked beans. Funnily enough we rarely ate baked beans in the UK but we are enjoying their revival here in our diet.

After bring back a few tins of a well-known brand of beans, I decided to experiment and so if I could come up with something close but better, less sweet and slightly spicier and, I did.

 We used dried beans that were left over from our green bean harvest that when left to mature produce very similar beans to haricot beans. We dried over 6 kg in total. We soaked and boiled 500g of beans in water with an added home-made stock cube.

The sauce was made from home-made tomato pisto (concentrated tomato pulp), mace, white pepper, salt, Tabasco and a touch of balsamic vinegar - quantities adjusted to suit personal taste.

Concentrated tomato sauce being prepared earlier in the year.

The beans were added and simmered for a further 20 minutes. Left overnight in the pan for the flavour to develop, reheated and served with fresh home-made bread toasted they are the best baked beans we have ever eaten. I made enough for two meals and they kept well in the fridge for several days.

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