Serious Baked Beans

 

When the cold dark January nights call for a quick easy supper, that uses store cupboard basics, and keeps the purse strings knotted - this is the one to turn to. 

You may need...

Make it vegan...

Replace butter with a good olive oil, and achieve the desired smokiness from Smoked Paprika or treat yourself to a smoked olive oil. If you are vegetarian then a good parmesan will add the saltiness and fat that the bacon brings to the dish. 

Ingredients...

  • 1 Tbsp of good olive oil
  • 1 Onion
  • 1 Clove of garlic
  • 1 Tbsp of sun dried tomato paste
  • 1 Tin (400g) chopped tomatoes
  • Sprig of fresh thyme
  • Salt and pepper
  • Pinch of brown sugar
  • 4 oz (110g) Smoked bacon
  • 1 Tin (400g) of mixed beans or pre-soaked equivalent cooked through. 
  • 1 Small Ciabatta loaf
  • 2 oz (55g) Butter or a good Olive oil

 

Right, lets get cooking!

1. Peel and chop the onion, crush the garlic. Drain your beans. 

2. Heat the oil and add your onions and garlic. When sizzling, cover and transfer to the simmering oven for 10 mins to soften. ( If you are making a vegan version add your paprika to taste now and stir in just before the next step, careful not to burn it)

3. Add the tomatoes and puree to the cooked onions, add the herbs, sugar and seasoning, stir and bring to the boil. When boiling, cover again and return to the simmering oven for a further 10 mins. 

4. When the tomato mixture is cooked, add the beans, set the pan on the simmering plate to boil.

5. Chop the bacon and put into a heavy based pan on the floor of the roasting oven for 5-7 minutes to brown and crispy. Tip the cooked bacon into the bean pan and stir together. 

6. Slice your bread and toast it - on the simmering plate, gives you more control and even colour on the toast!

7. Spread your butter, or (Vegan) drizzle a good olive oil over your toast, put onto plates and spoon over your umptious beans!

 

More from Sarah Whitaker in her 'Casual Aga Cooking' cook book. 

(Any Vege & Vegan additions to this recipe come from the Blake & Bull team) 

 

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