CHILE SPIKED BAKED BEANS
- 2 pounds navy beans, dried
- 1/2 pound bacon, cut into 1/2 –inch pieces
- 2 onions, finely diced
- 4 cloves garlic, minced
- 1 cup ketchup
- 1 cup chicken stock
- 1/2 cup maple syrup, pure
- 1/3 cup sugar, dark brown
- 1 tbsp mustard, Dijon
- 2 tsps salt, sea; plus more as needed
- 1 tbsp chili powder
- 1/2 tbsp paprika, smoked
Sort through the dry beans, picking and discarding any discolored or strange looking beans. Rinse the whole lot well, then transfer to a large bowl. Cover with at least 2 inches of cold water, cover with plastic wrap, and let the beans soak overnight.
The next day, drain the beans and transfer them to a stock pot. Cover again with 2 inches of cold water and bring them to a boil over medium-high heat. When boiling, turn off the heat and let the beans soak for 1 hour to tenderize and get extra awesome. Drain, reserving the cooking liquid. Set aside.
Preheat the oven to 250 degrees F.
Heat a super large Dutch oven (or oven-safe pot) over medium-heat.
Add the bacon and, stirring often, fry until just starting to crisp, about 5 minutes. Add the diced onion and season with a pinch of salt. Cook for 5 minutes, until the onion has started to soften and become translucent. Stir in the garlic and tomato paste, and cook for 1 minute, keeping the mixture moving the entire time.
Add the ketchup, stock, maple, sugar, Dijon, salt, and spices, and stir until smooth. Stir in the navy beans. Cover and bake for 5 hours, until the beans are perfectly soft, the sauce is thickened beautifully, and the kitchen smells like absolute heaven. Cook for another 30 minutes uncovered to crisp up the top of the beans.
If the beans get a tad dry throughout the cooking process, thin with a bit of that reserved cooking liquid. These beans are delicious straight away, but completely next-level eating the next day. Awesome.