Barbecue Pinto Beans
I grew up eating a southwestern cuisine with lots of grilled steaks, burgers and dogs, jalapenos, venison, ribs, fried bass and hushpuppies, corn on the cob, tortillas, and lots of pinto beans. My dad was the southwestern cook while my mom baked and made more of an international cuisine. My mom loved to experiment and try new things while my dad always relied on the tried and true.
I remember when I brought Dawn home for the first time to meet my parents, my dad and his wife greeted us with a pot of his special pinto beans and cornbread. My wife had NEVER had pinto beans, but it was love at first bite.
Dawn and I have been married now for 27 years and pinto beans are a staple, though we only make 3-4 pots a year. I still can’t make beans as good as my dad, but Dawn’s are close. I experiment too much I guess, and we have grown to like our little contributions to the bean recipe.
Today, Independence Day, Dawn had to work at the store till 7pm so I did the cooking, trying to have it all ready when she came home. I started the pot of beans this morning and they turned out to be the best pot I have made lately, so here is the recipe, sort of. I rarely measure things, I just start throwing stuff in.
About 3 cups of pinto beans, sorted and rinsed, placed in the crock pot on hi with about 4 cups of water, maybe more. Just keep your eyes on it to not let it get too low of water.
After the beans had cooked about 4 hours I sampled them to see if they were soft, and they were so I started adding the fixin’s.
1 Teaspoon of salt
1/2 Teaspoon of Black Pepper
1/2 Teaspoon of Cayenne Pepper
1 medium onion chopped
6 cloves of garlic, some chopped fine and others quartered
2 jalapeno peppers chopped
1 can of fire roasted tomatoes diced
5 slices of bacon, chopped. I don’t pre cook the bacon, just put it in raw and let it boil.
1 Teaspoon of Liquid Smoke
About 3/4 a bottle of Kraft Mesquite Smoke Barbecue Sauce
I was fairly restrained with the Barbecue Sauce at first and only used 1/2 of the bottle. But I tasted the beans about 3 hours later and knew immediately it needed more of the sauce. I added another 1/4 and cooked another couple of hours before we ate it. The beans were fantastic!
Beans are high in protein and fiber and are about as healthy as can be. If you want them a bit healthier you can leave out or cut back on the bacon. But the fat content is actually not real high if you do it right. This pot of beans will last us most of the week so that is really only about 1 slice of bacon a day between the three of us. Dawn usually skims out the bacon fat from hers.
We had this pot of beans with grilled Sirloin, grilled veggies including: corn, bell pepper, potato, onion, mushrooms, zucchini and yellow squash. I also grilled a jalapeno for the first time…and wonder why I just now tried that at 50 yrs of age! Grilled jalapeno on steak rocks. Dawn also did something different that was fantastic. She dipped her steak slices in the bean juice. She said it was great so I tried it. Goodby steaksauce! The bean sauce was pretty hot with all the peppers I put in it, and it absolutely worked on the steak!
Between the Liquid Smoke and the Mesquite Barbecue sauce the Pinto Beans had that barbecue aroma and flavor down!