Made With Love

Faulkner: Pot of simmering beans perfect Southern meal for fall

Ervena Faulkner
Ervena Faulkner

We're going to need a lot of energy this holiday season.

Not only must we plan meals for our family every day, there are parties, get-togethers and friends to bake for as well.

At this time of year it is not uncommon to hear people say "I need to check my calendar" before making the plans.

Everyone is keeping so busy.

I don't know about you, but I plan on staying strong and healthy this season so I can enjoy every minute. I make sure to start each day off with a piece of fresh fruit and a wholesome breakfast. Nutrition is always a priority.

The temperature hasn't dropped too much yet this fall, but when it does get colder, I'll be ready. A nice pot of beans is usually what's in order -- especially with cornbread.

Beans and peas are easy to cook ahead and freeze, the perfect thing to do when your social calendar becomes full.

CAROLINA-STYLE RED BEANS AND RICE

2 cups red beans

2 cups black beans

1 stick butter

1 medium onion, diced

1 10-ounce can tomatoes and red chilies

1 pound Polish smoked sausage

1 teaspoon chili powder

1 teaspoon salt

1/4 teaspoon black pepper

6 tablespoons hot sauce

Cooked rice

Soak beans in water overnight. The next morning, melt butter in crockpot placed on high. Add onions and saute until transparent. Wash beans and place in crockpot with tomatoes and red chilies enough water to cover. Let slow cook until beans are tender to mash. Add cut up smoked sausage to pot and allow to cook on low heat for an hour. Add seasoning during the last half hour of cooking. Serve over cooked rice.

Source: Ervena Faulkner's personal file

BAKED BEANS, SOUTHERN STYLE

1 pound dried beans

6 cups water

2 garlic cloves, minced

1 onion, sliced

1 small dried hot red pepper

1 bay leaf

3 tablespoons molasses

1/4 cup ketchup

1 teaspoon powdered mustard

1/2 teaspoon ground ginger

1 1/2 teaspoons Worcestershire sauce

1/2 teaspoon salt

3/4 pound salt pork, sliced

1/4 cup firmly packed brown sugar

Cover beans with water, bring to boil for 2 minutes. Let stand with cover on for 1 hour. Add next four ingredients and cook until beans are tender. Drain, reserving liquid. To 2 cups liquid or water add remaining ingredients, except sugar. Put beans in shallow 2-quart baking dish. Arrange pork slices on top. Add liquid. Sprinkle with sugar. Bake uncovered in 400 degrees oven for 1 hour.

Source: Ervena Faulkner's personal file

BLACK-EYED PEAS AND HAM HOCKS

2 pounds smoked ham hocks

1 package (16 ounces) dried black-eyed peas

1 onion, chopped

2 stalks celery, chopped

1 teaspoon dried red pepper

1/4 teaspoon black pepper

Place ham hocks in pot with enough water to cover, bring to a boil, reduce heat, cover and allow to boil 2 hours or until tender enough to be cut from the bone. Place peas that have soaked overnight in pot and allow to cook until a pea can be mashed between the fingers. Add remaining ingredients and simmer, allowing ingredients to blend in pot. Stir and simmer 1 half hour. Serve while warm.

Source: Ervena Faulkner's personal file

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