These beans are a classic in our family. I made a gigantic. And I mean giiiiigantic batch for my oldest sisters wedding. Other families might call them Calico Bean Pot, but in our family? It’s Valdean’s Beans. Whoever Valdean is…
(edited to add, I had someone on instagram tell me they knew a Valdean who made beans like this and we made all the connections and it was the SAME VALDEAN. MIND> BLOWN.)
The good thing is though, that while the measurements should stay about the same, there is a laaaarge window for swapping ingredients around.
You’ll need 6 cans worth (whether actually canned or cooked from dry) of beans. This could be lima beans, garbanzo beans, black beans, adzuki beans, white beans, baked beans. You name it, you can use it! So use up what you’ve got in your pantry for dried beans and cans of beans. It’ll be perfect.
If you really don’t like green beans in there? Ain’t nobody going to notice if you leave them out.
Now, bacon…is terrific in here. But! Not always available, whether it be cause I just don’t have any or its not in my grocery budget for the week. I like good bacon. Good bacon is pricy. Luckily! Pork Jowls and Pork Hocks are cheap but still pack a punch of flavour. So don’t hesitate to throw one of those bad boys in instead.
As with most things I make, Valdeans beans freezes beautifully. This makes a lot, and that’s a good thing. Bring it to a potluck, bring it to a friend, sock some away in the freezer for a rainy day, make it for dinner and serve it on rice. All options for this versatile dish!
And if it wasn’t more than just a one trick already? You’ve got lots of options for cooking. Baking in a dutch oven will probably always hold my heart, but equally delicious is in the crockpot or on the stovetop!
Since I’ve had enough lead up…I should probably share the recipe already!
Makes about 3 qts of beans.
1 lb bacon/jowl/hock
2 onions, diced or 1/4 c dried onion flakes (I’ve got an onion hating husband but he doesn’t mind dried onion)
3 cups or 2 cans baked beans (Sub equal amount white beans with 1 can tomato paste and 2 tbsp additional honey)
3 cups OR 2 cans cooked kidney beans
3 cups OR 2 cans cooked lima beans
3 cups OR 2 cans green beans
1/4 c honey
1/4 c vinegar (your choice what type, any is delicious)
1 tbsp dry mustard
1 tsp salt
If using bacon, dice and fry until crisp. Stir all the ingredients together in either a dutch oven, crockpot or saucepot.
Dutch Oven- Put lid on, bake at 350F for 1 hr
Crockpot- Turn on high for 2-3 hours or low for 4-6
Stovetop- Bring to a gentle simmer and cook for 30 min
Instant Pot- saute Bacon on the sauce function, add remainder, cook on manual for 10 min.
Now serve up those delicious beans and dig in!