It isn’t very often New Jersey gets to see 60 degree days in January. The uncharacteristically warm temps over the past weekend had me day dreaming of sunny blue skies and long summer days. When you get an opportunity like this it only makes sense to fire up the grill. So, we did just that — a little mid-winter barby!
In efforts to avoid breaking our lazy day streak, we quickly threw together some dishes with the ingredients we had on hand. These beans were among the feast and turned out so succulent and flavorful (think Boston Baked Beans). These will be making their way into our dinner repertoire, for sure.
So, grab a beer (and one for the beans!) and head on over to the kitchen…
(If you want to get really fancy, add some diced up weenies!)
2 cans small red beans
5-6 slices smoked bacon
1/2 large onion, chopped
1 bottle of beer (of your choice)
1/2 cup ketchup
2 tsp Dijon mustard
2 tbsp molasses
1/4 cup apple cider vinegar
2 tbsp brown sugar
a couple dashes of Worcestershire sauce
a few dashes of tabasco sauce (depending on your taste)
In a large dutch oven cook bacon until crisp and brown. Remove bacon from pot and set aside.
Add onion to the pot and sweat for a few minutes until onion becomes translucent.
Add 1/2 cup of beer, and then mix in ketchup, Dijon, molasses, vinegar, brown sugar, worcestershire, tabasco, salt/pepper . Add beans, cover and simmer for about 45 minutes, stirring frequently. Contiue to add the rest of the beer whille cooking (you may also have to add a little water if the beans begin to dry out).
Once the sauce cooks and thickens add the bacon back to the pot and serve.
I think its safe to say these are what dreams are made of. I love me a good saucy sandwich and what better way to entertain than to shrink one down into a bite-sized package of classic meets chic, wrapped up with a whole lot of de-de-liciousness.
Not only do they meet the standards of hearty and tasty for your casual affair – and simple & chic for a sophisticated celebration – but they are such a crowd pleaser and so easy to put together that you can enjoy them for literally any type of occasion in three simple steps:
- Rye cocktail bread (can be found in the deli section of your grocery store)
- Deli sliced corned beef
- Sauerkraut, drained
- Thousand Island dressing
- Swiss cheese
Butter one side of the bread, place on waxed paper and then assemble the remaining ingredients on top.
Heat an oven-proof saute pan to medium and place the Reubens in the pan just until the bread is toasty.
Place the (oven-proof) saute pan into the oven under the broiler for just a few minutes or until the cheese is melted and bubbly or you can hit them quickly with a kitchen torch.
4. Enjoy (quickly, they go fast!)