~ Comfort Food Bliss ~

Mmm... baked beans

Mmm… baked beans (Photo credit: jeffreyw)

It is cold. It is the last week of January. It is time for a comforting recipe that is easy and good and goes with all kinds of entrées. What is this magic bean of a recipe? Why Baked Beans of course.

I love baked beans though I have to be careful not to eat them when I have to cover a municipal council meeting for my newspaper at night. I am sure I do not have to explain any further.

In fact, I have a stomach that is a bit “delicate” so when I have to work at night I do not eat before I go so that it does not do something unexpected. It is funny how we have to adapt to things in life. Nine times out of ten my stomach survives a meal successfully, but it is that tenth time that makes one take precautions. But I digress (I often think that if I did not digress, I would not have much of a post).

This recipe was given to me by my sister, hence the name:

Great Baked Beans à la Peggy

4 – 15 oz. cans of baked beans (any kind you like; if I am feeling virtuous I choose the kind without pork—if I need comfort, I choose pork and beans)

1 onion, diced

3 tbsp. vinegar

¾ cup molasses

1 tsp. dry mustard

¼ cup ketchup

Bacon on top

Bake one hour at 350 degrees then 15 minutes at 400 degrees.

So simple, yet so good. You may think the magic ingredient in this is the bacon, but the real ingredient that makes all the difference in the world is molasses. Seriously—it gives it the right “body” and makes it kind of velvety—words I know not usually ascribed to baked beans, but it is true.

Sometimes I do not use this official recipe because I do not always have all the ingredients—if you have no dry mustard, use the yellow stuff. No molasses, throw in some brown sugar or maple syrup. No bacon? Cry a little—then make it anyway. Sometimes I crisp the bacon and put it right in with the beans. You can get as creative as you want.

I use this recipe when I have family dinners and it always disappears. For these dinners I serve it with spiral cut ham, cranberries, coleslaw, green stuff (I will give you the recipe for this some day), and roasted potatoes.

Cappuccino at Black Star Pastry Newtown

(Photo credit: sachman75)

I have two questions for you today. The first is existential: Would you consider someone a coffee lover if they have to use 3 teaspoons of sugar and a pint of milk in their morning coffee?

The second is: What is your favourite comfort food bliss? Feel free to answer one or both questions—and if you want to leave a recipe, feel free.