IF YOU CAN'T STAND THE HEAT…
A blog for a bold palette
Chef Steve Alls
Don't let the title scare you. I'm not one of those chefs that believe" if it ain't spicy you ain't cooking'". But I do believe in bold flavors and I also believe that flavors have to balance in any dish you cook. They should be vibrant and soulful. But enough of that…
My culinary journey started a long time ago in a galaxy far, far away…just kidding! But I can remember a lot of times I spent in the kitchen with my grandmother. I'm not saying I was some sort of culinary child prodigy but I did pay attention to what she did. She was my inspiration for my love of food and to ultimately become a chef. I was always mesmerized by the way she made flawless fried eggs in an iron skillet. It's wasn't until years later that I developed a deep respect for that. If you don't know what I mean just try to do it and see how many eggs it takes for you to make one that resembles a fried egg and is edible.
The reason I bring up my culinary past is the fact that this baked bean recipe was the first recipe that I really perfected. I would always bring these to family gatherings and picnics. I didn't change this recipe for years until I learned that andouille sausage was WAY better than kielbasa and that Cajun seasoning is a magic spice blend. So I call this recipe Big Wiggle's Magic Cajun Beans. I played off Jack and the Beanstalk's "magic" beans and the fact that they have a magic flavor from the pork fat. I know, it's corny, but it works. This is one of my favorite recipes so bon appetit! Try it at your July 4th party today and feel free to email me with any feedback you get.
Chef Steve Alls
BIG WIGGLE'S MAGIC CAJUN BEANS
Cooked Beans 1 bag or 2 large cans, drained completely of juice
Andouille Sausage ½ #, sliced
Bacon ½ #, lardons
Tasso Ham or Country Ham ½ #, diced
Red Onion ½ ea, small, small diced
Red Pepper ½ ea, small diced
Celery 2 stalks, small diced
Petite Diced Tomato 1 can, drained
Whole Grain Mustard 1 tbsp
Cider Vinegar ½ cup
Worcestershire Sauce 4 tbsp
Brown Sugar 1 cup
Smoked Paprika 3 tbsp
Garlic Powder 2 tbsp
Onion Powder 2 tbsp
Black Pepper 1 tsp
Cayenne Pepper 1 tsp
White Pepper 1 tsp
Oregano 2 tbsp
Thyme 2 tbsp
S & P as needed
1. In a sauté pan, render the bacon then remove from pan.
2. Reserve half of the bacon grease.
3. In the same pan render the Andouille sausage until crispy then remove from pan.
4. In the same pan brown the ham then remove from pan.
5. In the same pan sweat the onions, peppers, celery and tomatoes for 5 minutes and then add paprika, garlic powder, onion powder, black pepper, cayenne pepper, white pepper, oregano, thyme and salt and pepper as needed.
6. After mixture comes together place the beans, the meat, the vegetable mixture, the mustard, the vinegar, the Worcestershire and the brown sugar into a pot and stir thoroughly.
7. Cook beans until they come to a simmer.
8. Transfer into a baking dish and cook on 350° for 20-30 minutes until all flavors are married.