Santa Maria Style Beans

“Cats are connoisseurs of comfort.”
~ James Herriot All Creatures Great and Small ~

Well, we have two new to us/older cat’s to share our home, Murphy and Noah and after a run to PetSmart I think we have all of the necessary goods to make their lives comfortable and they seem to like their new surroundings, especially the open window weather.  They strolled from the open back porch to the open windows,  pretty much scoped out the place a good part of the night and at least three times jumped up on the bed before setting out for their next adventure of snooping. We had company for the weekend and dinner guests last night and they made the rounds for attention, I think they will adapt nicely to their new home. So we welcomed Murphy and Noah with an impromptu gathering of friends as well as a friendly dog by the name of Woody/Woodrow.



PhotoScapeXThe guys grilled and sliced the nicely seasoned tri-tip that I got at Trader Joe’s , I made a pot of beans and we chowed down on Santa Maria-style tacos with guacamole and pico de Gallo. I used canned beans and cooked them in the slow cooker, they just smelled wonderful cooking for several hours on low, additions of pancetta and linguica were very nice, but I can see that bacon and smoked ham would work well as several other recipes suggest. I was low on dried beans, but I think that the combination of pinto and kidney beans worked for me. I grabbed the kidney beans with mild chili sauce instead of the plain kidney beans and did not rinse them, but I did rinse and drain the pinto beans.   Dry beans should be precooked  according to package recipe and hen used in the recipe.  Pinquito beans are the original beans to use for this dish, but I can’t get them…

Instructions are for a slow cooker with the insert that you can sauté in, otherwise sauté veggies in sauté pan and add to slow cooker and continue on with the rest of the recipe.  I would even suggest baking in big casserole for at least 1 hour or until hot and bubbly.

1.  Sauté about 3 ounces of diced pancetta in 1 tablespoon olive oil (the stores now carry cubed pancetta it in small containers) add 1 link diced linguica, 1/2 cup diced onion red or yellow, 3 minced cloves of garlic and a sprinkling of Mexican oregano

2. Deglaze pan with 1/2 cup dry white wine and stir in 2 tablespoons agave syrup., and pour in 2 cans drained pinto beans and 1 or 2 cans of dark red kidney beans in mild chili sauce.  I add 1/2 cup either ketchup  or homemade chili sauce for saucer beans or you can add a mild BBQ sauce.

3. Stir in 1 tablespoon sherry vinegar, 16 ounces, of canned diced San Marzano tomatoes (plain or fire roasted) 2 teaspoons Dijon mustard and a teaspoon of dry mustard. I added a pinch or two of smoked paprika and a couple pinches of *optional chipotle pepper and an additional 1+1/2 tablespoons Spanish paprika. If you are using smoked ham products don’t add the smoked paprika.

4. Stir the beans and set on low heat for 4 hours, great for a cookout.  I’ll be making these again this weekend for our Sunday burger and dog cookout.