A little history of the baked bean.
Baked beans have become synonymous with the brand Heinz, who first introduced the beans to the English market in 1901 in Fortnum and Masons, Piccadilly, London.
Since then, they have made their way into supermarkets and corner shops all over the UK. A staggering 1,000,000 cans of Heinz Beanz are consumed everyday in the UK which is approximately 485 million cans per year, therefore they must be doing something right. I am not going to knock the Baked Bean, particularly the Heinz Baked Bean because they are instantly satisfying and healthy. However I want to be able to make these beans for myself, and for them to be as flavoursome if not more.
2 tbsp olive oil
1 1/2 medium onions, finely diced
2 cloves garlic chopped
1 tsp paprika
1/2 tsp ground cloves
2 heaped tbsp tomato ketchup
125 ml passata
150 ml water
1 cans haricot beans, rinsed and drained
1 tbsp Worcestershire sauce
Heat the oil in a large ovenproof pan. Add the onions and garlic and fry until soft and golden. Sprinkle over the paprika and ground cloves and cook for 1 minute then stir through the ketchup.
Add the passata and water and bring to the boil.
Simmer for about 10 minutes before liquidizing until smooth. Add the drained beans and Worcestershire sauce to the pureed tomato sauce. Season with salt. Stir well and bring back to the boil.
Put a lid on the pan and transfer to the oven for 1 hour 30 minutes. Stir in some boiling water before serving if the beans are a bit dry.
Store in the fridge and consume within 2-3 days.
For different variations try adding chopped bacon or chilli flakes to the beans once they have been baked. Fry chopped up pieces of bacon and stir them into the beans before serving.
Obviously they take longer to prepare and cook compared to tinned beans however they are packed full of flavours, more wholesome and definitely worth the effort. They are a different and much better alternative and they don't contain any sugar unlike Heinz beans, the sweetness comes from the tomatoes in the passata and I thought it was unnecessary to add more. I am converted and will now cross beans off my supermarket list.