Welcome to a weekly feature on my blog – Ben’s Zone. Written by husband… Ben. A foodie, coffee obsessed, ex-smoking, ex-drinking and Ridgeback loving Dad. Who is also seriously into his fitness. You can find him on the blog (most) Sundays. Enjoy 🙂
Favourite Recipes – Jamie Oliver Posh Beans on Toast
I am a huge Jamie Oliver fan. Aside from the fact that he uses every ingredient in the store cupboard (for some recipes) his meals are practical, tasty and pretty much always work. His ‘Comfort Food’ book, from which this recipe is adapted, is a real favourite of mine. I say ‘adapted’ as there are some stages (making your own flavoured oil for example) that I tend not to bother with, though I am sure they add a lot. I also added a little touch of my own (by which I mean bacon) but I think it complements the dish.
I like to make this on a lazy Sunday for lunch, it has all the comfort value of canned beans on toast but a stylish twist and the extra benefit of being good fun to cook. If you like this recipe I would recommend ‘Jamie’s Comfort Food’ as it’s full of dishes like this that are great to eat and a pleasure to prepare.
(to serve 4 smaller portions or 2 big lunches)
- 1 tin cannellini beans
- 2 onions
- Smoked paprika
- 3 cloves garlic
- 4 rashers smoked streaky bacon
- 1 tin canned tomatoes
- Nice balsamic vinegar
- Worcester sauce
- Loaf of sourdough bread
- Preheat oven to gas 3.
- Chop the onions really finely, they need to melt into a sauce so a fine dice is essential.
- Heat some olive oil in an ovenproof pan on a medium heat.
- Crush the garlic into the oil and fry for a minute or so to flavour the oil.
- Chop the bacon into lardons and start frying.
- Put in the onion and a couple of teaspoons (at least) of smoked paprika. Smoke is one of the key notes in the flavour and so I don’t hold back on the paprika.
- Keep the heat medium / low and fry the onions and bacon down to a sticky paste.
- Add a couple of tablespoons of nice balsamic, it’s another big flavour component so use your good stuff, let it bubble and reduce down to add to the stickiness.
- Add the beans and half the liquid from them.
- Use your hands to crush the tomatoes and their juice in. This is a bit of a Jamie-ism, the hand crushing business, and it does make it more rustic, it also shoots juice over your kitchen if you’re not careful.
- Add a couple of dollops of Worcester sauce and season with salt.
- Cook down for about 3 minutes.
- Cut a piece of baking parchments, scrunch up and soak with water, wring most out.
- Place the paper over the beans (this is a paper cartouche) and put in the oven for an hour.
- Now it’s just a case of waiting. When it’s coming up on the hour slice the sourdough and serve it buttered piled up with beans. Jamie suggests grating on some cheddar cheese and, for sure, it’s nice, but I can’t help feeling it gilds the lily slightly. For me, no cheese and enjoying the sweet sharp smokiness is more than enough.
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