I’ve never hidden my love for Heinz baked beans. They’re awesome, there’s no denying it, but occasionally it’s nice to try making things yourself. This only holds true in certain situations – the chances of you ever finding me churning my own butter or making my own ketchup are very slim (I know these things aren’t difficult, but I’m of the opinion that life is too short). However baked beans are so quick and easy to make at home that it seemed silly not to give them a go. When you make them yourself, you can know exactly what you’re putting in and you can tailor them to your own taste, plus you get the enjoyment of a few minutes spent playing in the kitchen! (I am aware that for some people this isn’t a plus, but for me it is… unless I’m feeling particularly lazy).
A lot of homemade baked bean recipes I see contain bacon and lard and other non-veggie ingredients, so I thought I’d make my own vegetarian version. They’re really easy – just cannellini beans in a simple sauce made with onions, garlic and tomatoes, and flavoured with thyme, brown sugar, smoked paprika and a dash of soy sauce. It all comes together to create a perfect balance of sweetness, saltiness and smokiness.
I served my beans on toast to celebrate Farmhouse Breakfast Week, which is going on as I speak (um… type…) – 26th January to 1st February. Breakfast has been the hardest meal for me during vegan January – I made my coconut oats with brown sugar bananas, which were incredible, and then I kind of got stuck. I can’t believe it took me until the last week of January to think of beans on toast. So simple, so tasty.
If you’re not much of a breakfast eater, try these beans on a baked potato or, if you’re feeling really fancy, with some sausages and chips (kids’ food is the best food).
So, I suppose this is my last recipe for vegan January. Tomorrow I’ll be posting a bit of a summary of the month, plus a collection of some of my favourite vegan recipes that I’ve stumbled upon this month. It’s been a great month, but boy am I looking forward to a nice fat slice of pizza.
- 1tbsp oil
- ½ onion, finely diced
- 2 cloves garlic, minced
- 1tbsp tomato purée
- ½tsp smoked paprika
- ¼tsp dried thyme
- 1tbsp brown sugar
- 1tbsp soy sauce
- 1 x 400g tin cannellini beans, drained (240g when drained)
- 100g passata
- Black pepper
- Heat the oil in a saucepan, and add the onion and garlic. Cook over a medium heat for 5 minutes until soft and translucent. Add the tomato purée, paprika, thyme, brown sugar and soy sauce, and cook for a couple more minutes.
- Add the beans and passata, and simmer for at least 5 minutes, until the mixture is piping hot and the sauce has thickened a little. Season generously with black pepper - you probably won't need salt because of the soy sauce, but add it if you think it needs it.
- Serve warm on toast.