Baked Beans in Tomato Sauce

This is a simple baked bean dish, with the beans baked in a tomato sauce, flavored with bacon and sage, sweetened with molasses, and spiced up with some chili flakes.

INGREDIENTS:
  • 3 cans of cannellini, romano, pinto or Great Northern beans
  • 1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
  • 1/4 pound bacon or pancetta, roughly chopped
  • 150 g firm chorizo or smoked Kielbasa sausage, sliced into coins
  • 1 medium onion, chopped
  • 4 garlic cloves, chopped
  • 1 tablespoon fresh sage or rosemary, finely chopped
  • 1/4 to 1 teaspoon chili flakes
  • 2 tablespoons molasses
  • 1/4 cup tomato paste
  • 1 15-ounce can whole plum tomatoes
  • 1 cup chicken stock
  • Salt
  • freshly ground black pepper
  • 1/2 cup chopped fresh parsley
  • 1 tablespoon worcestershire sauce
  • 2 tablespoons balsamic vinegar
YIELD: Serves 6 to 10 as a side dish
COURSE: Casseroles and One Pots
CUISINE: Canadian
DIRECTIONS:
  1. Cook bacon or pancetta: Preheat the oven to 325°F. In a 3 or 4 quart heavy-bottomed, oven-proof, lidded pot such as a Dutch oven, heat the olive oil over medium heat. Add the bacon and cook slowly until lightly browned and crispy.
  2. Add the chopped onions, sausage and increase the heat to medium-high. Cook, stirring often until the onions begin to brown. Use a wooden spoon to scrape any browned bits off the bottom of the pot.
  3. Add garlic, chili flakes, and sage, then add tomatoes and stock. Cook for 1-2 minutes, then add the molasses and tomato paste. Stir well to combine.
  4. Drain the beans and add them to the pot. Stir well. Cover the pot and cook in a 325°F oven for 30 minutes. If still a bit wet, remove the cover and cook for 15 minutes more. Repeat as necessary.
  5. Add the tomatoes, the sausage, and the stock. Bring it to a simmer. Taste for salt and heat. Add more chilis and/or pepper if needed.
  6. Stir in parsley and balsamic vinegar: Right before serving, gently stir in the chopped parsley. Taste for salt, add more if needed to taste.