It’s a Stand-By for a Reason

A couple of ham hocks and some hamburger were waiting in the freezer to participate in my freezer clean out project. I remembered an old recipe I had for crock pot beans that used both and decided to resurrect it. Ham and Beans is a stand-by dinner cuz it is so simple and made of staple pantry items. It’s what you do when you’ve carved the last bits off that Sunday dinner ham (bone-in, please), unless you buy hocks like me and store them in the freezer for such times as this.

For this recipe you add another meat and lots of spices, and then you’ve got Prairie Fire Beans.

When I went to the pantry for the essentials, I found that I was completely out of pinto beans. But I did have Great White Northern. Actually better today because they cook faster and I hadn’t thought to soak the beans overnight. (If you didn’t soak them all night, place them in a pot with water to cover and bring to a boil. Then drain and cook according to the recipe directions.)

I also found that I did not have any plain canned tomatoes, but some Fire Roasted instead.

So the recipe needed some tweaking and it all turned out quite deliciously I must say. Because the tomatoes were so revved up, I didn’t need garlic, salt, ketchup, cumin, oregano, taco sauce or chili peppers! Wow. Those tomatoes really pack the punch. AND, the little white beans did cook faster than pintos. I think the taste is lighter too, not so earthy.

At mealtime, I just baked up some cornbread and we were good to go; tortilla chips are a good go-along too. I was happy to have done the dump and go and come out with such a good meal. Except I did have to brown the ground beef, but everything else was just dumped in.

I’ve updated my recipe here to use the Fire Roasted tomatoes and listed the missing flavorings as a Note in case you are using plain tomatoes.

Oh, and the leftovers make a killer filling for Mexican Eggrolls, Burritos, or Flautas.

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