Quick & Easy BBQ Beans

This is one of my husband's favorie recipes. I thought I'd share it with all of you in time for your end of summer barbecue parties. It's so simple, I almost feel guilty...almost.

Quick & Easy BBQ Beans

The measurements are not exact because I have never measured them and really, it's mainly by taste anyway. If you prefer it sweeter, add more maple syrup...more tangy, add more tomato paste/ketchup...not too spicy, then add less garlic. I'll be sure to post a pic of this fab dish soon!

4 strips thick-cut applewood bacon, cut into small strips (I use kitchen shears for this and it's a snap)
2 cans small white beans (GF), drained and rinsed well
2 spoonfuls tomato paste (or in a pinch you could use ketchup - GF of course)
dash or two salt, to taste
1-2 tsp. crush fennel seeds, optional but we really like the flavor
1/4 cup + 2 tbsp. pure maple syrup (more or less depending on how sweet you like it)
6 cloves garlic, pressed (again, more or less depending on how spicy you like it)
a little water to thin (especially if using tomato paste)

Place bacon in a medium saucepan and heat over med/high, stirring, until cooked thorugh but not crispy. Remove from heat and add the beans, scraping up the bits on the bottom of the pan (take care not to over stir or the beans will become mushy.) Add remaining ingredients and heat over low just a minute or so until warm. Taste and adjust flavors to suit you.

*Feeds: 4/side dish OR 2/main dish


*To make this recipe even easier, cook the bacon, mix in the beans and then stir in some Organicville BBQ Sauce (which is GF and oh so delicious!) Add just a little maple syrup, fennel and garlic - bam! You've got amazing beans!!!

*Try adding some cut up hot dogs for a new and flavorful twist on franks and beans!


Sun Butter is Just Better!

I confess...I used to stick my finger in the jar of peanut butter. Hey, my hands were clean!!! I couldn't help myself - all that lovely, velvety, sweet smoothness with a touch of crunch and saltiness that would stick to the roof of my mouth in that weird yet endearing way... pure heaven!

Sadly though, since discovering my various food sensitivities over the last few years, I noticed my tummy not appreciating the attributes of P.B. anymore and, therefore, have been denying myself of this sticky seductress. Until now.

I recently discovered something that I dare say is actually better than my good old P.B. It is slightly sweeter and has that yummy, velvety texture with just a hint of salt...and it can be crunchy too, if you like. And here's the real clincher, it's much healthier! I'm talkin' about Sun Butter!!!

This amazing spread is made from the humble sunflower seed! And although it is made from such a tiny kernel, it packs tremendous flavor! One of my favorite snacks is to dip apple slices into crunchy sun butter with a drizzle of pure honey - amazing! And my latest exploration has led me to Sun Butter Ice Cream...mmmmm! So very rich and creamy with the sweet/salty taste that leaves you wanting more. I use this recipe from Karina Allrich as my base. Here's what I do:

2 cups unsweetened So Delicous Coconut Milk (the one in the green carton)
1/2 cup maple syrup
2 tsp. vanilla
1/2 tsp. 1/4 tsp. coconut flour (instead of x.g.)
large pinch sea salt

-Whisk it all up really well, especially if using the coconut flour, so there are no lumps. Pour into ice cream maker and let it go for about 10 minutes. Add:

2 very generous soup spoonfuls crunchy sun butter (in the last 10 minutes of the ice cream cycle)

-Let in whirl about another 5-10 minutes until it's very thick. Eat right then (soft-serve style) or place in container and freeze.

So, so good!