Thursday, September 11, 2008

The Great Beer Bean Mystery

I have a distinct memory of sitting at the small dining table in my Granny and Pa's camper at Lake Something-or-Other about 20 years ago (I would have been seven or maybe eight) eating Granny's yummy barbecue Beer Beans. They were tangy and sweet, salty and smooth. And I'd imagine there was also some appeal in fact that taboo booze was the main ingredient.

Now fast forward to 2008: No one in my family remembers Granny's Beer Beans. Not even my Granny. My mom thinks I made the whole thing up, and Granny just doesn't remember (though she didn't rule out the possibility).

So I set out to prove them wrong ... or at least all too senile to remember :-) Last night, I threw together these Baked Beer Beans:

I combined a little Bud Light (it's what my neighbor Wes had on hand ... but a vegan stout would be nice), cannelenni beans, ketchup, molasses, maple syrup, onion, and garlic and then tossed the whole dish in the oven for 45 minutes. After one bite, the memory came back even stronger. The beer gives the beans a unique hops-y taste, but not in an overpowering way. It was like deja vu, a taste I know I've experienced. Now I have to make them again so my family can see how right I was.

Since beans are no main course, I also mixed up some of Show Me Vegan's delicious Tempeh Spread and served it on Ezekiel bread with tomato and iceberg lettuce:

I saw this Veganaise-based spread on her blog awhile back, and as a fan of sandwich spreads, I knew I'd make it someday. Since summer's coming to a close at the end of the month, I'm trying to eat as much summer-y foods as I can. I'm going to miss the days of cold entrees, grilled tofu, and fresh juicy tomatoes. Oh well, at least the pumpkins are coming!

18 comments:

shellyfish said...

Oh my dog - I haven't had beer beans since I was a little kiddo! Like, 20 or 25 years ago! They are so yum, and like you, I thought they sounded so grown up! I love that no one remembers...maybe they drank a little too much beer, you know, sometimes we forget things...

Kate said...

any recipe for the beans? they sound delicious!

River said...

The pumpkins are coming! The pumpkins are coming! :)

That's incredible how you were able to come up with a recipe for something you used to eat 20 years ago! You were born to cook!

How's Mr. Kitty McCutie?

VeggieGirl said...

Beer beans, eh?? Enticing!!

Nikki Douglas said...

All I want is beer baked beans. I must have these. Maybe with little vegan hotdogs in it too!

jelymo said...

silly question, does the alcohol bake out of the beans? i don't drink, but i thought beer beans sounded good.

funwithyourfood said...

haha for some reason bud light seems more "authentic" to me..

Teddy

Jennifer (of Veg*n Cooking) said...

What a funny story! Haha, you'll have to have your Granny taste your beans to see if that jogs her memory at all. These sounds really good, I might have to try this out!

jessy said...

those. sound. awesome. i looooove baked beans, and baked beans with beer - sweet deliciousness!

there are things that my sister and i remember from our childhood that everyone else seems to have forgotten about. it's crazy! i bet your beer beans will spark their memory though!

i just printed out Lisa's recipe for the Tempeh Spread. i'm going to try it out this weekend. it looks stellar!

Lisa (Show Me Vegan) said...

I love your idea of adding beer to the beans (as you know I would). Glad you liked the tempeh spread! It's a standby around our house.

jess (of Get Sconed!) said...

I'm not a baked beans fan, but those look lovely.

Erin said...

Never heard of beer beans, but they sure do sound good. Bud Light seems appropriate :)

jennycestcake said...

Beer beans!!! Oh, yeah! I've never had those, but sign me up for a tasting!

twoveganboys said...

Yes, that is where the other vegan boy is, in my pregnant belly. :) Baby Adam will be here soon. So, I will have to be even more creative with my meals when now that I will have two stubborn little boys to feed. Ha ha. Have a great weekend.

Krys

ChocolateCoveredVegan said...

Beer beans?! Ooh, sounds fun!

And thank you so much for thinking of me. Luckily, Dallas is pretty-much land-locked, so all we're getting is heavy rain. The poor people in Galveston are getting the brunt of it.

The Vegan Snorkeler said...

I don't like the taste of beer, but your beans and sandwich look fantastic! I'm glad to hear that you've found a new place.

Cyn said...

Oooh, beer beans sound delicious! I'm going to have to do something like this.

Sheridanna said...

Yummers! That sandwich looks awesome and I love baked beans and I love beer, so there ya go!