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Smokey Bacon-Bean Simmer Pot

BY ELIZABETH BORELLI

Smoky Bean Simmer Pot

Smoky Bacon Bean Simmer Pot

6 servings

How can a hearty bean stew made from scratch be made simple?  By breaking it down into 3 simple, 5 minute steps, neatly fit in to your regular routine. The lentil and bean combination makes a stew so rich and delicious, you won’t believe how easy it is to put together.  Simply cover your beans in water the night before you plan to serve them, rinse and simmer the next morning, turn the stove off before you leave  to start your day and wrap up your recipe with the remaining ingredients that evening.  Serve warm or hot.  Add a fresh green salad and some thick, crusty whole grain bread for a satisfying meal.

Ingredients

  • 3 cups dried bean soup mix, or a mixture of your favorite bean and lentil varieties you have on hand
  • 4 cups finely chopped cabbage or chopped kale (do your chopping in the morning while you’re waiting for your beans to come to a simmer)
  • 1 cup coconut bacon, or smoked tofu, chopped
  • 2 cups jarred or BPA-free canned tomato sauce
  • ½ cup water
  • ½ tsp. salt (to taste)
  • ½ tsp. liquid smoke or smoked paprika (optional)
  • 1 tablespoon maple syrup (optional)

Soak beans overnight in plenty of water (4” above the dried bean level), in the same saucepan you’ll use to cook them.  The next morning, rinse and refill the saucepan with water to the same level.  Bring to a simmer and cook for 1 ½ -2 hours before you start your day.  Scoop out a spoonful, rinse and decide if they’re soft enough.  When fully cooked, add the cabbage, turn off the heat, cover and leave them for at least 15 minutes more.  If the room temperature is less than 70° throughout the day, leave the covered bean and cabbage blend on the stove until you get home.  Otherwise, when the pot is sufficiently cooled, place it right in the fridge until you’re ready to reheat it to finish the dish.

Drain the cooled bean and cabbage mixture when ready to complete the recipe, and add remaining ingredients.  Heat again to simmer and cook covered for 5-10 minutes, then serve.

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