Drunken Beans


I love my copy of Heirloom Beans: Great Recipes for Dips and Spreads, Soups and Stews, Salads and Salsas and Much More from Rancho Gordo. I used a recipe for Drunken Beans and served it a couple times over the holiday weekend. Thought I’d share:

He calls for using Pinto, Rio Zape, Red Appoloosa or Anasazi beans, but what I had on hand Yellow Indian Woman beans. Delishy…. and making it into the repertoire, for sure.

Drunken Beans
I’ve done this both ways — using canned and doctoring them according to the recipe and starting from scratch. If you start from scratch, soak the beans overnight, then saute onion and garlic in bacon fat until translucent, add beans and their soaking water (plus more to cover if you need it). Cook until they’re tender. Depending on the beans, it could take 1 to 4 hours. Using canned beans gets you a sweeter taste; fresh is more earthy.

4 cups cooked beans, in their broth
1 bottle lager beer
2 slices high quality bacon
1/2 medium yellow or white onion
3 garlic cloves
3 to 4 serrano chilies
1/2 pound cremini mushrooms (baby bellas)

In a stockpot over medium heat, warm the beans and their broth. Add the beer and simmer to cook off some of the beer, about 20 minutes.

Meanwhile in a heavy skillet over medium heat, saute the bacon until the fat is nearly rendered and the bacon is brown, about 10 minutes. Remove witha slotted spoon and drain on paper towels. Pour off all but 1 tablespoon of the fat in the pot. Add the onion, garlic and chiles and saute over medium heat until soft and fragrant, about 10 minutes. Add the mushrooms and saute until wilted and soft, about 10 minutes. Stir in the cooked bacon.

Add the mushroom mixture to the beans, season with salt and pepper and cook until the flavors are blended about 10 minutes.

Steve likes to serve his with corn tortillas and lime wedges. Makes a good meal on its own, I’d say. But also very good with tacos and barbecue of all kinds.


About Author

Liz Johnson is content strategist for The Journal News and lohud.com, and the founding editor of lohudfood, formerly know as Small Bites. As food editor, she won awards from the New York News Publishers Association, the Association of Food Journalists and the Associated Press. She lives in Nyack with her husband and daughter on a tiny suburban lot they call their farm — with fruit trees, an herb garden, and a yardful of lettuce, tomatoes, onions, shallots, cucumbers, zucchini, radishes, cabbage, peppers, Brussels sprouts and carrots and four big blueberry bushes.

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