This recipe was shared with me by Drew D., aka (affectionately known as) the Crazy Cat Lady. The title refers to the awesome flavor, not digestive repercussions. :)Ingredients:
3 cups dried pinto beans
8 slices of thick-cut bacon, cut into about 1inch pieces
1 onion, cut into large chunks
1 green bell pepper, cut into large chunks
1/2 cup brown sugar
1 teaspoon Tabasco sauce
4 cloves garlic, crushed
salt to taste
Rinse the beans and pick out any stones or bad beans. Place in large pot, and add 10 cups of water. Bring to a rolling boil, and boil for 5 minutes. Turn off heat, and cover pot. Let sit for one hour. Add remaining ingredients to the pot. Bring back to a boil, then reduce heat to medium, or enough to maintain a slow boil. Continue cooking for several hours until beans are tender. During the cooking time, add water to the pot as needed.
Beans cooked covered, low, and slow will have a thinner broth. I like to uncover them, and let the broth reduce so it's thick and hearty.
My note: Don't be timid with substitutions. You can use sausage or ham instead of the bacon. Today I don't have a green bell pepper, so that will have to be left out. No beer in the house today, but I had a bottle of wine in the fridge, so I used about a third of it. If you don't drink, leave it out.
I serve with a fresh-baked pan of cornbread. Any cornbread that is left over, I put in a big zip lock freezer bag and throw in the freezer. I make a fresh batch of cornbread each time we have soup in the fall, by adding all the leftovers to the freezer bag, when Thanksgiving rolls around, I have plenty of cornbread for the dressing. One less thing to do for the busy holiday preparations.