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Baked beans are one of my favourite comfort foods. In Eastern Canada, a traditional winter activity is to visit a "cabane à sucre", or sugar shack where they produce maple syrup. Part of the experience is a meal where foods like sausages, eggs, pancakes and baked beans are enjoyed in a communal setting! Traditionally, these beans are baked with lard but this recipe is vegetarian for all to enjoy!
As a family with 5 children, I would cook with a lot of food with beans in it. Unfortunately, my oldest son did not like beans until I found a recipe for Cowboy Beans. Wow! This changed it for him. He loved them! (Funny how a the name of the recipe made such a difference, haha!)
This recipe is probably 100 years old. I named it after my grandmother, who I called "Honey". This was her mother's recipe. Her mother came to this country from the Azores in 1904, as a widow with 5 children. She brought the oldest, a son, and the youngest, my grandmother with her. As she earned money cooking on Ranches in the San Francisco Bay Area, she was able to bring her other three children to the United States.
I never knew they had "Pink Beans" as this recipe calls for. I was sure the local market wouldn't have them, but there they were. My husband loves these beans and he says he has never tasted anything like them. I serve with some crusty garlic bread. Always delicious.
Adzuki beans are used in Japan to make a sweet red bean paste called Anko. Anko can be used in many traditional Japanese sweets. Growing up, adzuki treats of all kinds were always my favorite. This is my memory of my kitchen table growing up, the adzuki bean treats with the smell of fresh tea brewing.
This is a Greek Cypriot dish called Louvi. This is made with black eyed beans and spinach. Once in your bowl you add lemon juice and olive oil and it is great with fresh bread. This reminds me of my childhood days visiting family in Cyprus! Kali orexi - Enjoy!
"La Cazuela de Paisa" is traditional in the region where I was born in Medellin, Colombia. Made with red kidney beans it can be accompanied with avocado, "chicharron", ripe plantain, potato chips, hogao. The recipe has been passed down from generation to generation. A meal full of color and delicious ingredients typical of the Colombian Andean region.
Beans Around The World.
My aunt lived in Panama for a couple of years in the 1970's. When she returned, she brought back amazing sandstone carvings and molas. As I was looking at Google images of Panama, I realized how much the area changed since she was there. So I decided to draw my interpretation of a modern mola, using various buildings as a backdrop.
The buildings illustrated (yes, I used some artistic license) are: 1) The rooftop ramp is Frank Gehry's Biomuseo; 2) The spice grinder/spewer is the W Hotel Panama; 3) The mandolin slicer/chopper is Central Tower; and 4) The circular slide is F & F Tower. I loved the idea of combining a kitchen with a playground, which is how I think of my kitchen.
Beans Around The World: Italian? Or American?
Nonno (Grandpa) was Italian and he made these beans for my dad, who rarely left his farm (Va Via Farm) in Michigan. So I thought I'd have a little fun with the idea of whether this farm scene could be re-imagined as an Italian scene. Actually, though, dad didn't really have a silo. If he did, he certainly would not have let the roof rust!
The other question of the day is whether Nonno's Bean Blend is wine or hot sauce? You'll only know by trying some, since "No-one says 'no' to Nonno"!
Photo credit goes to Sandra Salamony, who took the photograph from which Nonno's close-up is based. Thanks, Sandra!
The day on which it is traditionally eaten is commonly known as the Laba Festival. The earliest form of this dish was cooked with red beans and has since developed into many different kinds. It is mainly made up of many kinds of rice, beans, peanuts, dried fruit, lotus seeds.
In the Han Dynasty, during the Laba Festival, people did not consume Laba congee as it was used for worship the gods. In the Northern and Southern Dynasties period, the date of the Laba Festival was fixed on the eighth day of the twelfth lunar month. In the Song Dynasty, Laba congee was widely consumed throughout China by not only the common people, but also government officials and aristocrats. In the Qing Dynasty, the Laba Festival was sometimes celebrated as the "Spring Festival", and Laba congee became even more popular. In the imperial court, the emperor and nobles gave Laba congee to the officials, servants, and others.