Friday, July 17, 2009

Recipe #5 - Sides - Killians Beer Baked Beans

OK, been awhile since I posted a recipe. This is one of my best, and will become a staple if you are a smoker. There is a huge advantage to smoking beans while smoking your meat... Moisture.

A smoker naturally draws moisture out of your meat. Much like Arizona, it is a dry heat (so's a blow torch up your ass, but that is a story for another post). By placing the beans in the smoker, the vapors will help to keep your meat moist. So, these go in during the first 4 hours of your cooking session. My first smoker was an offset design. The firebox was set on one side of the cooker. The heat flowed from left to right, and the temperature difference was about 30 degrees from one side to the other. Additionally, the first 6 inches of cooking space right next to the firebox was ALWAYS to hot to smoke meat. BUT, putting the beans right next to the firebox, in that first few inches, got the beans to cooking, dispersed the heat better AND added moisture. In addition to a great side dish, this is a dish that will make your smoked meat better. A win win win!

The basic recipe comes from a cooking class I took at the Culinary Center of Kansas City, taught by Richard McPeake. It is included in his book, Backyard BBQ - The Art of Smokology. I changed a few items (including adding the beer), but my basic bean recipe owes a great deal to Richard's recipe.

About once a month, I will smoke brisket. I try to smoke 2. 1 to enjoy that day ( day). The other, I freeze to use in other dishes (Brisket Chile and this bean recipe for a couple examples). I like to use at least one of the end pieces as the scrap meat. It contains an extra amount of the rub than if I use inside slices. This rub flavors the beans better than adding chili powder, liquid smoke, garlic, etc. You can certainly add the scraps from the meat you are cooking that day, just prior to serving. But, cooking the beans for a few hours with the scraps in will add a layer of flavor.

OK, Ingredient list...

1/2 pound of smoked meat scraps, well spiced already with spicy rub,
1 large white onion, finely chopped
1 medium size red onion, small diced (about 1/4 inch square) ... save these to add just prior to serving
6 ounces tomato paste
1/3 cup Brown sugar
1/3 cup Brown Sugar ... save to add just prior to serving
1/3 cup Molasses
1/3 cup Sorghum Syrup
1 TB Dry Mustard
1/4 cup White Vinegar
1-27 ounce can BUSH'S brand Country Style BBQ Beans
1-16 ounce can BUSH'S brand Pinto Beans
1-16 ounce can BUSH'S brand Great Northern Beans
1 bottle of Killians Irish red Beer

Place all the ingredients in a heavy baking pan, stir well to blend ingredients. Add a bottle of Killians if using an offset smoker, or just 1/2 bottle if using a bottom heat source cooker to the top without mixing. Place in cooker and allow to cook along with the meat. If you are not using pre cooked scraps, and planing to add the scraps of the meat you are cooking, add a TB of Chili Powder, and a TB of the rub that you are putting on the meat. I like to cook ribs on a rack over the beans, allowing some of the flavoring from the ribs to drip into the beans.

Just prior to serving, add the red onions and stir. Then sprinkle the remaining brown sugar over the top.

Lots of ingredients, but well worth the extra effort.

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