"Self-sufficiency does not mean 'going back' to the acceptance of a lower standard of living. On the contrary, it is the striving for a higher standard of living, for food that is organically grown and good, for the good life in pleasant surroundings... and for the satisfaction that comes from doing difficult and intricate jobs well and successfully." John Seymour ~ Self Sufficiency 2003

Tuesday, 25 January 2011

Solar Baked Beans

I have been unable to find a publisher for my solar cook book, and Jane is eager to get her spring / summer meals planned.

I don't know how I'm going to get the recipes out there now, except for posting them on my blog.  Pity - was hoping to condense them in one place (like an e-book), with links to the recipe from the title.

Whatever - enjoy this one.

Solar Baked Beans

1 cups uncooked haricot or sugar beans - soaked overnight
1 litre water boiling water (½ quart)
1 tablespoon oil
1 medium onion, peeled and diced
½ tablespoon mustard powder
1 tablespoon tomato paste
1 tablespoon brown sugar
1 tablespoon molasses or treacle
1 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce
½ teaspoon salt
½ teaspoon pepper
½ cup water
pork of some kind - optional (this can be leftovers, bacon, ribs or pork chops)
Pre-heat the solar oven to 150oC (300oF)

Drain and discard the water that the beans have been soaked in, and place the beans in a large dark pot.  Add the boiling water. Add no seasonings at this point. Cover and place in the solar oven preheated to 130 - 150oC (250 - 300oF) and cook for 1½ - 2 hours.

Beans in water - boiling away in the solar oven
For the sauce, on a conventional stove, add the oil to a frying pan / skillet. Add the diced onion and cook until brown. Stir in the mustard and the tomato paste and cook for two minutes, stirring constantly (this increases the flavour).  Add the rest of the flavourings - brown sugar, molasses, Worcestershire sauce, salt and pepper, and stir it all until well combined.  Add the pork, if using, and the ½ a cup of water and stir.

Drain the beans and place them back in the cast iron or dark pot and mix the sauce in gently to combine. Check for seasoning. Cover and cook for a further 1½ - 2 hours or until tender (check quickly every ½ hour).

Serve warm, or cold, with a fresh green salad harvested from the garden and a loaf of crusty homemade bread.

If you want to double the recipe, allow for an extra ½ hour of initial cooking and ½ - 1 hour baking in the solar oven.

This is very delicious and very more-ish.  Baked beans done any other way will never be good enough again.


Jane said...

Looks great. So sorry about not finding the publisher. Don't give up hope, things seem to work out. I can't wait to try that recipe. We have not seen sun in weeks, but it has to come out sooner or later. That will be my first recipe. Thanks.

Dani said...

Jane - enjoy - has become a firm family favourite :-)

Mrs. Mac said...

You could do a cooking blog and have it by invitation only .. so your recipes are only shared with family/friends while you wait for a publisher. Nice recipe!

ezrablu said...

Mmmm boy do those look good! I love baked beans! Thanks for this recipe...I'm gonna give it try as soon as it warms up enough here in about 6 months lol

tffnguy said...

Looks good! I've got to build me a solar oven.

Dani said...

Mrs Mac - that's a thought ... or perhaps I'll just continue to give you all tasters while I search :-)
Ezrablue - I have heard of people cooking in their solar ovens when there is snow on the ground, and sun in the sky. Would be nice to know if it is possible.
Tffnguy - need plans? Or you gonna use John's? I have plans if you need :-)

Chet Bacon said...

Currently cooking 1 lb of Baked Beans (1/2 pinto 1/2 red kidney) - soaked overnight - so far I have cooked them for 6 hours in the New England spring sun. They are just getting semi soft. Typical seasonings - hoping for success after another 6 hours. These were un-cooked beans - next time I may pre-cook them for a few hours before hand but I want them totally solar this time. I am using a Global Sun Oven and live in Conn. USA - spring isn't the best time for heat but it has raised the inside temps to 275 - 300 F through out the day.

Dani said...

Chet - Welcome :)

My recipe (http://ecofootprintsa.blogspot.com/p/solar-oven-recipes.html "Vegetables" section) for baked beans, which are pre-soaked the night before, and cooked at a temperature which allows the water in the pot to boil (your 275 - 300oF is perfect), takes 3 - 4 hours tops. Please - don't pre-cook them with grid power, it is not necessary :)

Enjoy - would love to know how they turned out.