Wednesday, March 21, 2012

Slow Cooker Pork and Beans

Combine a pound of dried pinto or pink beans with a small pork loin roast for a delicious meal of pork and beans.

Slow Cooker Pork and Beans

One of the most favorite things that I really enjoy out of this blogging experience, is when I ask everybody "What's Cookin' Good Lookin'?'" over on the Facebook page. Readers share what's cooking in their kitchens, or what's planned, or sometimes just what they are craving, and very often, they share a recipe in those comments.

It was in one of those posts, that Natalie, one of our Facebook family members, mentioned making this bean dish, and I immediately put it on my list to try.

Natalie told us that this recipe came about during their evacuation from Hurricane Rita, and so I thought of a few clever names - Pork and Beans Rita, or Evacuation Beans and Pork, or even Hurricane Pork and Beans. In the end, I figured just good ole pork and beans would work the best. With hurricane season right around the corner though, this would be a great meal to put on while you wait out a storm in some hotel room north of the coastline, so it's a good reminder to put your crockpot on your evacuation packing list. Of course, you don't really need a hurricane to give it a whirl either.

Natalie uses two packets of onion soup mix for her recipe, but feel free to substitute the homemade version included in the notes if you prefer. Now that I've tasted this recipe, I also think it'd be fantastic with those homemade seasonings, but substituting freshly sauteed raw onion for the dried, and I can't say that a bit of bacon wouldn't hurt either, if you don't mind taking a few extra minutes to do that. I'll definitely be making it again for sure and I'm likely to play around with some additional seasonings too, so I say, add in your favorite pinto bean seasonings when you make this. Gotta say though, it's pretty darned tasty written just as it is.

Oh yeah - I did get a little bit of a chuckle outta this too. Remember that time that I wanted to cook up a nice pork roast, and I asked The Cajun to pick one up for me on his way home? And he showed up with this itty bitty, two-pounder piece of pork that I could literally hold in the palm of my hand?


Well... this recipe was perfect for that! So funny that the man who usually comes home with the industrial-sized everything, would bring me a 2 pound pork roast. Next time I want pulled pork or a nice dinner pork roast with intended leftovers, I guess I should be much more specific on that size thing.

Here's how to make this lovely recipe for slow cooker pork and beans, and thanks so much Natalie for sharing your recipe!

I had some pink beans in the pantry, so that's what I used this time, but this would be great with pintos too, since they are both similar in texture and flavor. The small red beans and even white beans would also be good choices for this dish.


Do the usual pick through, sort and rinse thing with the beans. Soak overnight according to the package directions. If you want to use red kidney beans, it is recommended that you preboil them, rather than soak them, before putting them in the crockpot. Put beans in a stockpot, bring to a rolling boil, boil for 10 minutes, drain, rinse and then transfer to the slow cooker.


When you are ready to cook, add some of the water to the two onion soup mix seasoning packets, chili powder and black pepper; whisk together. Hold off on any salt though since we're using a packaged product for seasoning and there's plenty of salt already.


Add the beans to the slow cooker and pour the seasoned broth and the rest of the water over the beans. Stir in the jalapenos too if you're using them, and feel free to add in any of your own personal, favorite pinto bean seasonings here too. I'm thinking a packet of Sazon seasoning might be good next time I make this.


Place roast into the cooker, cover and cook on low for 7 to 8 hours, or 4 to 5 hours on high, turning roast over halfway through, if you happen to be home. No biggie if you're not.


When done, roast should be fall apart tender and between 145 and 160 degrees F on an instant read thermometer.


Remove the roast to a platter and loosely tent it with some foil to keep it warm.


To thicken the beans, remove about 1/2 cup of them (without the liquid) and smash them thoroughly.


Then stir the smashed beans right back into the pot.


Look how nice the beans cooked up! Taste them and add salt, only if needed, and add some Cajun seasoning or cayenne pepper, to taste, if desired. Go light though, add a little, taste and adjust.


To serve, spoon the beans over hot cooked rice and serve pieces of roast on the top or on the side. You can also shred the meat and stir it back into the beans, however, the meat will take up most all of the juice from the beans, so I like it better served separately over the top of the rice and beans. Add a mixed garden salad or green vegetable, some rolls, cornbread or bread and iced tea to round it out. Yeah, yeah... I served a salad and peas, and peas aren't a "green veggie" and might constitute starch overload, but they were leftovers and I wanted to use them up!


Recipe: Slow Cooker Pork and Beans

©From the Kitchen of Deep South Dish
Prep time: 10 min |Cook time: 8 hours | Yield: About 4 to 6 servings

Ingredients
  • 1 pound of dried pink beans, pintos, small red beans or white beans
  • 6 cups of water
  • 2 envelopes of dry onion soup mix (like Lipton's)
  • 1 teaspoon of chili powder
  • Freshly cracked black pepper, to taste
  • 1/4 cup of chopped pickled jalapenos
  • 2 to 3 pound boneless pork loin roast
  • 1/4 teaspoon of cayenne pepper or Cajun seasoning (like Slap Ya Mama), or to taste, optional
  • Kosher salt if needed, to taste
  • Hot, cooked rice
Instructions

Rinse and sort the beans, soaking overnight according to package directions. Next day, add to the slow cooker. Whisk together some of the water with the soup mix, chili powder and pepper and add to the slow cooker. Add the remaining water to the slow cooker and stir in the jalapenos. Place roast into the cooker, cover and cook on low for 7 to 8 hours, or 4 to 5 hours on high, turning roast over halfway through, if possible. Roast should be fall apart tender and between 145 and 160 degrees F on an instant read thermometer.

Carefully remove the roast and set aside, loosely tenting with foil to keep warm. To thicken the beans, remove 1/2 cup of the beans, mash thoroughly and stir back into the pot. Taste the beans, add salt, only if needed, and cayenne pepper or Cajun seasoning to taste, if desired. To serve, spoon beans over rice and serve pieces of roast on the top or on the side. Add a garden salad or green vegetable, some bread, rolls or cornbread, and iced tea.

Cook's Notes: Actual cooking time will depend on the bean you use. If you want to use red kidney beans, it is recommended that you preboil them, rather than soak them, before putting them in the crockpot. Put beans in a stockpot, bring to a rolling boil, boil for 10 minutes, drain, rinse and then transfer to the slow cooker. May substitute a homemade onion soup mix. For each envelope of homemade, use 3 tablespoons of dried onion flakes, 1 tablespoon of beef base (like Better than Bouillon) or 2 tablespoons of granular beef bouillon, 2 teaspoons of onion powder and 1/4 teaspoon of seasoned salt (like Lawry's).

Source: http://deepsouthdish.com

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