Thursday, September 12, 2013

Beans and Cornbread

I soaked a bag of beans overnight and got them to cooking this morning for a pot of old-fashioned baked beans, just because I was hungry for a bowl of them.  My kids will probably laugh at me when I tell them that the first time I tried to make from scratch baked beans, they turned out terrible.  Baked beans aren't supposed to be crunchy.  I was still very young and still cared about what other people thought, and I didn't want anyone to know what a dismal failure they were, so I took them out back into the woods, dug a hole and buried them.  They were so bad that the dog didn't even try to dig them up.

I dehydrated a bunch of sweet corn last year when I found a really good sale on frozen corn.  It turned out great and rehydrates really well.  But I found that when I run the dry corn through a little electric chopper, it turns into cornmeal that makes the best cornbread I have ever made.

Homemade beans and cornbread.  Simple comfort food.  And oh, so good.  Don't think I will have to give any of it a decent burial this time.


  1. I worked with a woman that looked at me like I grew horns, when I told her I like beans and cornbread.

    After some discrete questions from others, I found out she came from humble beginnings and thought of beans as something only poor people ate. I guess she didn't realize being poor doesn't mean you can't like something that's economical and good for you.

    Regardless of any perception, few things are as tasty as navy beans and ham, seasoned with salt, pepper and a little garlic, with a side of cornbread cooked in an iron skillet.

    I like to garnish them with chopped green onions.

  2. You make ham and beans the same way I do, except that I cook the onions in the dish, as I rarely have access to green onions. I wonder why folks sometimes feel that the foods we ate when poor aren't any good. Some of my favorite dishes are those I grew up with when times were lean. I am of the opinion that cornbread baked in a cast iron skillet will make nearly any meal better, especially if bacon grease is used in the process.

  3. It's best when the bacon is cooked crispy in the skillet, removed, crumbled and added to the batter with finely chopped onions.

    I think I need to buy some salt pork, and make a big pot of navy beans.

  4. know how to make cornbread. I have to admit that cheat. I buy boxes of bacon ends and pieces on sale, dice up the meat, brown it in a skillet, jar it up in half-pint jars and run it through my pressure canner. The grease from cooking the bacon goes into jars in the fridge, where it will keep nearly forever. I use that grease to coat the skillet and open a jar of bacon, crumble it up a bit more and stir into the batter. Hadn't thought about onions, but will try that tonight.