1-pot Baked Beans

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I still remember the first time when I tried the canned baked beans bought from the very first imported food mart in my city, it was an exciting experience. Since fresh ingredients are easy to find and pretty cheap in China, canned food is not so common in our daily life at all. Canned baked beans is popular for a reason. They are tender, juicy, sweet and smoky, same standard taste almost everywhere, cheap and can be kept for ages. This recipe is for those bean lovers who are bored with the same taste, looking for a less sweeter, more texture and fresh version of homemade baked beans.
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I didn’t bake my beans, just stew them on the stove. I started with dried beans, but they do take a long time to cook, and you’d better plan ahead to soak them overnight. If you are short on time, you can easily turn to convenient canned beans(only seasoned with salt). It’s up to you. I also used pink beans as I had it in my pantry, but cannellini beans, navy beans or any other type of beans is perfectly okay.
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This easy baked beans recipe is so versatile that you can have it as a side next to the mains, as a topping on toast, or even mix it with cooked pasta and add some cheese to make a proper dinner.
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Ingredients: (serves 2-3)
100g dried pink beans(or any other beans), soaked overnight
1 medium sized onion, finely chopped
3 cloves garlic, crushed
6-8 cherry tomatoes
large stalk celery, finely chopped
1 tsp ground cumin
1/2 tbsp tomato paste
toasted bread, roughly torn
celery leaves or other green herbs for garnishing
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1, cook beans in a pot of boiling water for 30-40 minutes until they are tender. Drain.

2, put a frying pan on medium heat, add generous amount of oil. Put in onions, sautée for 5 minutes until soft. Add garlic, celery, tomatoes, cumin and tomato paste, stir for 3 minutes until fragrant.

3, add beans, salt and a cup of water. Bring to a boil, continue simmering for 10 minutes until slightly thickened. Stir frequently to avoid stickiness on the bottom. Season to taste, add more spices like chili flakes or pepper as you prefer.

4, top with roasted torn bread and fresh herbs.
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