[51] Beer-Glazed Black Beans with Bacon (and Tomatoes!)

How to Cook Everything, by Mark Bittman

Oh man, oh man! I’m so far behind on getting recipes up, and I’m not quite sure how that happened. Still, it’s an exciting time for me. We knocked out seven recipes last week (including this one and the previous post), and are on target to knock out another seven or eight this week. And that’s including having punked out and had pizza last night, our attending a game night Thursday, and our being off to a birthday celebration Saturday.

Woo! Of course, that means I better get a crackin’ on posting these old recipes, eh? Well, here’s the starter.

My hint for this recipe is to be careful with your chili/chile powder.

h2. Ingredients

4 – 8 oz bacon, cut into cubes or small pieces
1 onion, chopped

1 tbsp minced garlic (I just used about 3 big cloves.)

1 cup beer

1 cups cooked or canned black beans, drained but still moist

1 tbsp chili powder

1 tbsp honey

1 c chopped tomato, either fresh or canned

Salt and freshly ground pepper

h2. Instructions

Cook the bacon pieces over medium heat until crisp (and crazy delicious!). Once the bacon is done, scoop it out with a slotted spoon (basically, you want to be leaving the fat in the pan), and cook the onion until soft, stirring occasionally. Once the onion is soft, add the garlic and cook for about a minute, then add the remaining ingredients (including plenty of salt & pepper).

Bring the mix to a steady boil, and cook until the liquid is slightly reduced and thickened (~15 minutes). Taste and adjust the seasonings if necessary, then mix in the bacon bits. Serve immediately or refrigerate for up to 3 days, serving reheated. Or, heck, just freeze it and serve it about a week later, also reheated.

h2. Cooking and Consumption Notes

h3. Cooking

I always struggle with “slightly reduced”, and this recipe was no exception. I always end up with “reduced, and then some”. I’m not really sure why this is the case, though I’d guess it’s because I’m not good at telling if something is reduced until it’s quite reduced (same thing with “thickened”). So, these were super glazed beans.

We used a porter beer in this recipe; Bittman says they’re all good, but the flavor profile will change depending on what you used. Mostly I used a porter because all we had cold were porters and pumpkin beers, and I didn’t think pumpkin would, in fact, be a good flavor to add to this dish (maybe I’ll try it next year). I hear some objectors in the background saying, “But didn’t you have something lighter warm?” Certainly, but consider the math of the situation:

The typical beer bottle contains 12 oz.
The beans wanted 1 cup of beer.

1 cup = 8 oz

Well, I think we can all see where this is going. Thus it’s important to add cold beer.

h3. Consumption

Okay, folks, I could really use you guys to start commenting on Bill’s entries and begging him to post more. Please? It turns out that the software we’re currently using (Serendipity, at the time of writing), shunts comments on posts off to the official author of the post. So if you comment on his entries (such as “Bacon”:http://www.metacookbook.com/archives/37-18-Bacon,-in-our-toaster-oven-broiler.html or “Cook with Jamie”:http://www.metacookbook.com/permalink/cook-with-jamie.html), he’ll see your pleas for sure.

Perhaps you are wondering why in the world that’s a consumption note. I’ll tell you:

Bill is the only one to have eaten more than two bites of this dish1.

Sadly, I read “1 tbsp chili powder” and whipped out 1 tbsp of chile powder from our stash of fine New Mexico ground red chile. Hell, it was MY STASH before we moved in together. I really didn’t think it would be an issue. However, in the ingredients list of this recipe, Bittman directs you to page 66 of the book, where you can make your own chili powder. SUFFICE IT TO SAY: It’s not pure ground chiles.

I found something else to eat that night. Which was really sad, because this sounded and smelled and looked freaking fabulous.

Note: All Amazon links above are affiliate links. This means I get a tiny percentage if you buy the linked items or other things via Amazon after clicking. Your purchase price won’t change. And if you do smile.amazon for charity, they stack. Still without changing your purchase price. Thanks!

fn1. In fact, he’s had two whole servings, as he took a frozen quantity to work for lunch yesterday. So go bug him, please.

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