These Boston beans with chorizo are packed full of flavour and ready in 30 minutes, a perfect weeknight comfort meal.
Some recipes on Holly Cooks take three or four iterations to get right. Last week’s steamed fish with rice and herbs is a case in point – a change to the method here, some new ingredients there and then a few trials later and the wanted meal emerges. It takes time, but good things do and I enjoy the different stages to reach that plate of deliciousness. But just occasionally an idea comes and I write out a recipe, thinking through flavours, and when I give it a go, boom!, a new meal that works is born. This tends to leave me feeling like a magician, waving my wooden spoon to create something delicious.
These Boston beans with chorizo are one of these magician creations. I had seen a billboard advertising baked beans and was thinking about how home made ones are so good, and then the rest just followed. I wrote out the recipe sitting in the car as GP, our 9 month old, slept. Those nap times are such precious moments. She is happily dozing and I have energy to write, probably caffeine-fuelled energy. It feels like the stars have aligned when she sleeps, I get out the laptop, and the new recipe flows.
I then googled baked beans and discovered that traditionally they only contain four ingredients and are cooked in the oven for six hours or more. I love slow cooked food, but being organised enough to sort everything ahead of time is often beyond me. I wanted a meal that relied mainly on store cupboard ingredients and could be put together in 30 minutes.
GP woke up and we went inside to find her brother before heading out to the playground with Granny. After the playground we returned to my folks home for puzzles and then it was time for Peter Rabbit while Granny and I sorted tea. As we fed the kids I asked Mum if she had any treacle – she did. Now with the black treacle it was just possible I might have all the ingredients for these Boston beans with chorizo. I bundled the children into the car and hoped GP wouldn’t sleep on the 15 minute drive home, which of course she did. Dave arrived home, we got the kids in the bath, and at that point I realised the treacle was still back at Mums. I left Dave with a promise I would be back in ten minutes to put some supper together.
I crept into the kitchen with that feeling of joy, just me myself in the kitchen for 10 minutes! I looked in the cupboard and to my delight there was treacle I must have bought a year ago. I fired up my laptop to remind myself what else I needed, and raced around the kitchen grabbing the remaining ingredients. A little while later the beans were bubbling away and I joined Dave in the bedroom as he dressed the kids in PJs, while our son decided on the stories for that night. Once the stories were finished Dave went to the kitchen to set the table. I fed GP and 10 minutes later joined him in the kitchen.
I had been so focused on the beans I hadn’t thought to cook anything else, so that night we ate them with reheated rice from the fridge. The Boston beans with chorizo were so good they felt almost magical. The cumin gives an earthiness and the paprika a gentle spicy kick. The 20 minutes of boiling reduces the tomatoes with the mustard and treacle to a gentle, slightly sweet, spicy sauce which coats the beans well. You don’t need to include the chorizo but I like that peppery meaty flavour. The dish is the epitome of comfort food and, apart from the sausage and treacle, seriously healthy! JP and GP ate these beans the following night as did we, but this time with a jacket potato. They would also be good on toast.Print
Boston beans with chorizo
These beans will last in your fridge for four days once cooked and they also freeze well.
If you don’t want to put the oven on, you could fry the chorizo in the pan first. It will release it’s oil and then turn crispy. At this point, remove from the pan and fry the onion in the oil released. You won’t need the 1 tbsp of oil in the recipe below.
- Prep Time: 10 minutes
- Cook Time: 20 minutes
- Total Time: 30 minutes
- Yield: 4-6
- 1 tbsp oil
- 1 large onion, finely diced
- 1 tsp ground cumin
- 1 tsp ground paprika
- 2 tins of tomatoes
- 2 tins of haricot beans, drained
- 1 tbsp English mustard
- 3 tbsp molasses or treacle
- freshly ground black pepper
- 250g chorizo, sliced into 1cm thick coins, optional
- Preheat the oven to 200C/180C/400F, and then use a non-stick baking tray to roast the prepared chorizo for 25 minutes. It will roast and release the oil within it.
- Heat the oil as listed in a large lidded pan over a medium heat to cook the onion. Cook with lid on for 5 minutes until soft, stir in the cumin and paprika and fry with lid off for a further minute.
- Add the tomatoes, beans, mustard, molasses or treacle and ground pepper and stir well.
- Increase the heat and boil for 20 minutes so the beans cook and the tomatoes reduce and condense the flavours. Stir occasionally.
- Lastly add the chorizo and any oil it has released and stir well. Serve.