Hi there and happy Friday to you! After a super rough couple of days in terms of my energy levels, I woke up this morning feeling much better (yay!). I think this change is partly due to me taking a break from cacao in my morning smoothies and as a hot beverage. I am one of those people who is really sensitive to the theobromine in cacao which makes it so effective as a stimulant when I’m not feeling good, but quickly becomes addictive for me as well. Anywho, I’m happy to be through the worst of my withdrawal from cacao and I’ve vowed to use it much more sparingly in the future. It’s back to herbal tea in the mornings for me.
Even though I felt crappy all day yesterday, I took some time in the afternoon to make some baked beans for Alan that he has been requesting pretty much since we started our whole foods, vegan diet over two years ago. Prior to that, canned baked beans used to be one of his favorite side dishes. It’s also one of his childhood faves, he tells me that his mom used to buy the can from the store and then “doctor” them up by adding heaps of brown sugar to them. This is also the woman who served her child coffee and honey buns for breakfast, but that’s a different story…
I started with about four cups of cooked pinto beans. I also addd some chopped onion for texture:
Then, I gathered up the following ingredients: vegetable broth, molasses, dates, tomato paste, reduced-sodium tamari, mustard powder, garlic, more onion, cayenne pepper, ground cumin, and balsamic vinegar (not all ingredients are pictured):
Everything but the beans went into the Vitamix to make a luscious, sweet, rich sauce that I stirred into the beans. I poured the entire mixture into a lightly oiled glass baking dish:
An hour later at 350 degrees:
I think these would be fantastic for a party. Alan thought the sauce could have been a little less thick, so I’m increasing the amount of vegetable broth in the recipe. Here it is:
BBQ Baked Beans
4 cups cooked pinto beans, rinsed and drained
1/2 large red onion (divided)
1 1/2 – 2 cups reduced-sodium or no-sodium vegetable broth
1/4 cup molasses
7 oz. tomato paste (about 1/2 cup)
2 teaspoons reduced-sodium tamari
2 cloves garlic (or 1 teaspoon garlic powder)
8 Medjool dates, pitted
1/4 cup balsamic vinegar
1 teaspoon mustard powder
1 teaspoon ground cumin
1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper
Preheat oven to 350 degrees and lightly spray a 9″ x 9″ baking dish with non-stick cooking spray. Pour the beans and 1/4 of a large chopped onion into a large bowl. Combine the vegetable broth, onion (the remaining 1/4), molasses, tomato paste, tamari, garlic, dates, balsamic vinegar, mustard powder, cumin and cayenne pepper into a high-speed blender and process until smooth. Stir the sauce into the beans and pour into the baking dish. Bake for 1 hour.
At some point, I’d like to try these in the slow-cooker, too. But, for now, this recipe is fantastic and I’ll be submitting it to this week’s recipe link-up party, Healthy Vegan Fridays.
Last week’s most clicked-up recipes for HVF included these:
1. spanish chickpeas and spinach with roasted garlic from janet @ the taste space:
2.caramel apple trifle from heather @ sweetly raw:
3.raw cinnamon roll bites from vicky @ sweet & healthy living:
Wow, talk about lots of amazing vegan food options.
Speaking of Healthy Vegan Fridays, I noted in Wednesday’s post that I have some exciting news about the future of this project. The big news is that my co-host, Gabby of The Veggie Nook and I are now looking for a third co-host! Shelby from Everyday Vegan Girl was the third founder and co-host, but she is taking a break from blogging and pursuing other opportunities (we will miss her, but wish her well).
We love that so many bloggers participate each week and we’re excited to take it to the next level. If you’re interested in applying to be our third co-host, this is a great opportunity to get exposure for your blog and develop your marketing skills. Requirements include a commitment to writing whole food vegan recipes, posting the link-up code on your blog every Friday and helping us spread the word through social networking. The time commitment is between 1-2 hours a week. If you are interested, please fill out the short survey by following the link below. We will begin reviewing applications on Monday, January 21st. Good luck and we can’t wait to move forward with this.
If you have any questions, feel free to e-mail me at carrieonvegan @ gmail .com (one word).
Lastly, before I go, I have to share a link with you because my beautiful cat, Xena, is featured as “This Animal On This Day” on the Our Hen House website. My baby is famous, check her out here.
I hope you have a happy, healthy weekend and I’ll see you back here on Monday.
Note: this post has been submitted to Wellness Weekends and Healthy Vegan Fridays.