Braden Family Cookbook

Chuck Braden

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BLACK BEANS                                Joel Pressburg 

1 pound black beans
14 cups hot water (divided use)
8 - 9 pieces thin sliced bacon, chopped into pieces
1 small onion, chopped
1/8 cup chopped celery
1/4 cup chopped carrots
1/3 cup granulated beef base[1]
TSP.. White pepper
TSP. Tabasco (more to taste)
1 TSP. Salt (more to taste)


White wash:
1 cups water
cup flour

Rinse and sort beans.  Place beans in large stockpot or bean pot, and cover with 6 cups of water.  Bring to a boil, and continue boiling 2 minutes.  Remove from heat, cover and let stand 1 hour.  Drain water from beans, and set covered beans aside. 

In a work bowl of food processor fitted with metal blade, combine bacon, onion, celery and carrots.  Process until finely chopped.  Place bacon mixture in large skillet and saute over medium-low heat until slightly browned.  Stir bacon mixture into beans.  Add six cups hot water, beef base, white pepper and Tabasco sauce.  Bring to a boil, reduce heat to medium low, and simmer gently with lid tilted 1 hour or until tender, adding the remaining 2 cups of hot water during cooking if necessary. 

Remove cooked beans from heat, and set aside while you prepare the white wash: Place flour in small mixing bowl and gradually stir in water, blending well to remove any lumps.  Return beans to heat and bring to a boil.  Add white wash, reduce heat to low and simmer briefly as it begins to thicken.  Add salt and stir well.  Makes 1 to 2 quarts, depending on water added. 

The beans can be served as a side dish, but when spooned over rice and topped with chopped red onions and fresh cilantro, it becomes a tasty entree.  (Always add hot water to the bean pot during cooking, since cold water will cause the beans to split.)

[1]Careful with the salt in this recipe as the granulated beef base can be mostly salt.  Check the label before using salt later on in the recipe.