White Beans seasoned with Country Ham over Cornbread
Growing up we ate alot of beans and cornbread during the winter time. I still think on a very cold day not much beats beans over cornbread. I consider this to be a comfort food.
For the cornbread I mixed one cup of all purpose flour with one cup of corn meal, a quarter cup of sugar, one tablespoon of salt and three tablespoons of baking powder. In a seperate bowl I mixed one cup of milk, with a quarter cup of vegetable oil and one egg. To the wet ingredients I added one small onion diced and one eight ounce can of creamed corn. I then mixed in the dry ingredients and baked it at 425 until it firmed up and a toothpick cam out clean. This is basically just a standard cornbread recipe to which I added creamed corn and onion.
For the beans you will need half a pound of dried navy beans, and half a pound of dried great northern beans. Soak the beans according to directions on package and then rinse them well. You will also need two stalks of celery diced, one onion diced, one carrot diced, three cloves of garlic minced, a pinch of salt, a tablespoon or so of vegetable oil, and a quarter pound of country ham rough chopped.
Begin by sweating the celery, onion, carrot and garlic in vegetable oil with a pinch of salt, and the country ham over medium heat until the onions are transluscent and the carrots are soft. Add the presoaked beans and cover with water. Bring to a boil then simmer adding water when necessary until the beans are soft.
You can eat the beans as a soup or, as I prefer, ladled over cornbread. For this recipe (after the pinch of salt to sweat the miripoix) you shouldn't have to add salt as the country ham has plenty. You could also use a ham bone instead of country ham if you have it available, or any other type of cured pork. For a vegetarian option skip the pork entirely and add salt to taste.
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