Wednesday, February 29, 2012

Grandma Herr's Favorite Swedish Baked Beans

Bean month has been a great month. I really didn't think I was going to like beans. I mean c'mon. The texture alone has always been repulsive. But I think that I have been able to find several recipes that have done away with the repulsiveness and left me with a desire to have beans. I've been fascinated with how full I feel when eating them and how easy they are. I'm excited to continue to incorporate beans into our diet. Especially those Roasted Garbanzo Beans... yum.

For my last post, I'm doing an extra special one. Upon hearing of bean month, my Aunt Linda emailed me a family story/treasured recipe. It just so happened that it was for a recipe that I wanted to do, but frankly dreaded. Baked Beans have always been a "oh no thank you" for me. The email from my aunt was perfect as it linked Baked Beans with a family I would do anything for. Made it impossible for me to ignore this type of bean! 

I was a very lucky kid. My grandparents lived in our house with us. They had their own entrance and own little apartment and we lived upstairs. As a result, I was very close with them. They lived below us until they passed and were in essence my second set of parents. I still miss them every day. So when my aunt emailed with stories of them and their favorite Baked Bean recipes, I knew it was something I must try!

Grandma Herr's Favorite Swedish Baked Beans 
4 cups (32 oz. total) Canned Baked Beans
1 large apple (Green Granny Smith) pealed, cored, coarsely chopped
¼ cup Raisins
½ cup Yellow Onion, finely chopped (or half of a med. Size onion)
¾ cup Brown Sugar
1T. Yellow Mustard
¾ cup Catsup
Four Slices Crisp Bacon, Chopped

Drain excess liquid from canned beans.  Stir all ingredients together and place in a oven safe casserole dish with lid. Bake at 250 degrees for 1 ½ hours until bubbly and hot

Basic ingredients all ready.
Please note the new Le Creuset 9 inch oval dish... in red, of course.
Liquid portion of the dressing, ketchup, mustard and brown sugar.

Pre oven. I unfortunately didn't have a lid,
but aluminum foil worked great!

Looks just about the same when you take it out, but it was bubbling!
Like I've said, I was not excited for Baked Beans. And even making this all I could think was how unfortunate it was going to be when I didn't like them. They came out of the oven and I dipped my spoon in almost immediately. I was so surprised, they were delicious! No joke, I was blown away. This is the first recipe in My Year of Vegetables that I have had such a surprise result. The boyfriend couldn't stop eating them! I am so pleased that they are this good! We will definitely be having them with anything barbequed like my aunt suggests. Thanks Aunt Linda for sharing a very special memory and tradition.

Stay tuned for my next post in which I'll announce the vegetable for March!

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