Sunday, December 15, 2013

Traditional Christmas Bean Glop

What do you serve for Christmas dinner?  What are your family traditional foods?  I know that some families have the same meal for decades.  It's tradition!  (And why not?)  In my family we have our own, albeit strange, food traditions.  I always serve smoked turkey and honey glazed ham.  I've been doing it for years and years and I can't tell you why.  It's just what I do!

Of course, my husband and son love ham and smoked turkey seems to be a favorite of my daughters.  I guess that's where it started.  I used to do a poached whole salmon, but finally stopped when I realized that I am the only one who truly enjoyed that protein at Christmas time.  I think the salmon was a carry over from my parents.
The other two required elements of our Christmas meal is Bean Glop and Hot German Potato Salad.  They both go well with ham and smoked turkey and again, are huge favorites of my husband.  I don't want to call him a Grinch exactly, but the foods of the holiday season are what gets his interest, not the decorations, music, religious background or even the presents.  It's the food!  Cookies, hams, cakes, turkey, pies, mixed nuts and snacks, candies....all of those things make his eyes shine and his smile wide.
I am sharing the oddest of our Christmas foods with you, Dear Reader.  I know that you will not be making it this holiday season, but trust me, it is equally good at a summer barbecue.  It's easy, it rather cooks itself and it's easy to make it vegetarian friendly by omitting the bacon.  It has a yucky name, for reasons that become apparent when you see a bit pot of it burbling away in your crock pot, but it tastes fine and feeds a crowd.


This recipe came from my mother, "Pete" Rawlings.  She got it from a good friend of hers, Aileen Reynolds.  Over the years I have tweaked the proportions a bit and spiced it up, but it’s still very similar to the “Bean Glop” Mom used to make back in the 1950s. 
Serves a bunch.

2  15 oz. cans low sodium garbanzo beans
2  26.5 oz.cans low sodium kidney beans
1  15 oz. can pinto beans
1 15 oz. can cannelli beans
2 26.5 oz. cans black beans
1 lb. bacon, diced
4 tart green apples (Granny Smith, Braeburn or Gala); cored, seeded and diced
2 large onions, diced
1 jar Snappy Tom tomato juice or Spicy V-8
brown sugar to taste
Drain all the beans and add to the crock pot.  Add the apples, onions and bacon and mix well.  In a large measuring cup, mix brown sugar* and tomato juice.  Pour over the beans.  The liquid should come up to about 3/4 of the way to  the top of the beans.  
Cook on high in the crock pot with the lid off for 8 to 10 hours.  The liquid will gradually be absorbed and the sauce will thicken.  Stir occasionally.  If the glop seems to be drying out before it’s melded into the proper consistency, add more tomato juice-brown sugar mixture.  When it's done the color of the beans will have darkened and the sauce will have thicken.  It will be a good meld of flavors, rich and earthy.
Freezes well.  
I hope you try it sometime.

Happy Holidays!


john said...

Just plain YUM!

diane b said...

It is interesting how the traditional Christmas fare is different in a all countries and even homes within a country.For many years and still in some cases, the Australian traditional Christmas dinner was turkey, ham or pork with roast vegetables and greens followed by plum pudding and brandy sauce. It took generations before Australians realised how silly this was , to be having a winter type dinner in the middle of a hot summer. Many of us now have a sea food meal with salads. Prawns, lobsters, crayfish, oysters, mussells and BBQ fish is our favourite fare.