Inspiration for this recipe came from several sources, but ultimately, when I received Provider Dry-Beans in my CSA last week, I knew I wanted to share a mouthwatering, summertime treasure; Smoky BBQ Baked Beans.
This recipe is versatile enough, though, to use canned beans, if you’re short on time, or any dry bean you have on hand such as black-eyed-peas, black or pinto.
Prairie Bottom farmers grew these beans last Spring, dried them through Summer and Fall then shelled them over winter. Sara, Wilbur’s mom, said they are the most difficult of all bean varieties they grow to shell. They’re tough to get into which makes them particularly time-consuming to harvest.
Sara was out weeding the corn when I stopped by. She’s a farmer’s daughter, a teacher and now, farmer again. She’s particularly proud of the work she and Wilbur have done with the land trust to protect and preserve the Prairie as it was slated, in part, to be developed. Some 650 acres, including the Farm, are now protected.
Do you see the hand crank on Wilbur’s tractor? This is the only gas powered tractor used on the farm. Wilbur uses it to to till and water; there’s a rain barrel on the back with water collected from the barn roof.
The Farm sets on a former lake bed, so the soil retains moisture well. This is ideal for established plants. However, seedlings require a reliable water source to germinate, so when new seedlings are planted, hand watering is done regularly. This season is a dry one.
All weeding on the farm is done by hand. This includes pulling, hoeing and using a hoe wheel. Weeding is a daily activity because weeds compete for water and can crowd out seedlings.
Prairie Bottom uses organic farming practices, yet is adjacent on two sides to conventional farms. The challenge is to make sure crops are protected when neighboring farms are spraying pesticides.
There is a buffer surrounding the Farm, putting distance between Wilbur’s crops and neighboring crops. Even so, Wilbur stands at the edge of his property when neighboring farmers are spraying, concerned about over-spray. Julieanna shared that the tractor operator will often lower the booms, which reduces drift.
More to come on the farm, but in the meantime, lets talk about these beans. Shall we?
Growing up in Texas, BBQ was king. It’s like Starbucks in Seattle; there’s a BBQ pit on every corner. After I stopped eating meat, we’d go to a BBQ pit and I’d get a big baked potato and an ice-burg lettuce salad; no leafy greens in sight.
Baked beans were never vegetarian, so I’d give’em a pass.
But instead, I indulged in copious amounts of BBQ sauce… slather it all over the potato, and wish they had veggie BBQ Baked Beans.
Oh yeah, and the cornbread? That got a Texas-size dunk in the BBQ sauce.
These beans, y’all. Although I’m partial to using Provider beans, this recipe is just as tasty with pinto, black or black-eyed peas.
Be sure to use your favorite BBQ sauce, I highly recommend this recipe, and serve with a generous supply of Tabasco (this is not a sponsored post, I just love this stuff!) and extra sauce. These are over-the-top mouthwatering…. and this is comin’ from a former Texan, y’all.
Smoky BBQ Baked Beans
- 1 C Dry Beans such as Provider, Pinto, Navy or Black-Eyed Peas (I used Provider) OR 2, 15-oz (425g each) Cans of Beans, rinsed and drained (choose your favorite bean!), 200g
- 1, 12 1/2 oz Large Purple Onion cut in half and sliced into thin 1/2 moons, 350g
- 2 C Medium Carrots sliced, about 1, 142g
- 2 Cloves Large of Garlic minced
- 1/8 tsp Red Chili Flakes (if you like more heat go with 1/4 tsp)
- 1 tsp Cumin ground
- 2 tsp Smoky Sweet Paprika
- 2 Tbs Coconut Oil unrefined cold-pressed
- 3/4 C Fire-Roasted Tomatoes crushed, 234g
- 1 C BBQ Sauce homemade sauce
- 1 tsp Sea Salt
For the Beans:
- If using canned beans, skip soaking the beans, move on to #2. Soak dry beans overnight, or at least 8 hours, making sure water covers the beans by 3". Drain and rinse the beans. In a medium saucepan, add beans and enough fresh water to cover beans by 3". Add a pinch of salt and bring to a boil. Turn heat to medium-low and simmer for about 30-45 minutes. Start checking the beans at around 30 minutes. The beans are done when they are tender. (Providers took about 30 minutes - but this time can vary depending on variety of bean used). Drain and set aside.
- Preheat oven to 350F (177C).
- In a large roasting pan, add the onion, carrots, garlic, chili flakes, cumin, paprika and coconut oil. Stir. Roast for 20 minutes, stirring after 5 minutes to evenly distribute the coconut oil.
- To the onion mixture, add the beans, fire-roasted tomatoes, BBQ sauce and salt. Stir.
- Bake, uncovered, at 350F for 45 minutes. Allow to rest for 5 minutes, then serve.
- Store leftovers in a covered container for up to two days. When reheating, add additional BBQ sauce or water to thin the beans as they tend to thicken.
Recipe NotesRecipe adapted from Jamie Oliver's BBQ Baked Beans.
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