With winter in the air down here in Kiwiland, and colds, flu and potential sports injuries lurking around the corners, we are trying to keep our strength and immunity up with warm and hearty nutritious meals that aren’t too difficult to prepare.
This is my slow-cooker crock pot version, but if requested I can also provide the stovetop method for you. (Just let me know, no worries!)
Yesterday I was an ugly day outside, but I had a wonderful birthday. We began the day with our daughter’s hockey game, followed by a movie with a friend (we saw The Reader and I think we both really enjoyed it!), and the grand finale was my wonderful husband preparing dinner for us. I even received text messages from my closest mates, flowers from my friend & neighbour and even a lovely inspirational gift & message from another friend.
I should have photographed my hubby’s gorgeous meal of roasted leg of pork with roasted pumpkin, potatoes, and carrots. He even made broccoli to balance out the colour palate a little. I was only allowed minimal access to the kitchen and the smell was driving me crazy...in a really good way, of course! I was allowed to make a simple white wine gravy to go with his lovely meal, but it certainly could have stood on its own without my sauce.
Anyway, another week begins and I am very happy and grateful for the amazing people in my life. I am happy to be healthy (other than the annoying remnants of a cough/cold) and beginning another year here in paradise.
3 Cups Haricot Beans (White Navy Beans)
1 Cup Milk
30 Gm Butter
8 Rashers Bacon, finely diced
1 Onion, finely diced
3 Stalks Celery, finely diced
2 Cloves Garlic, crushed
4 Cups Chicken Stock
1 Cup Corn Kernels
1 Small Handful Parsley, chopped
*Salt & Pepper
*Amounts vary to individual tastes.
Soak beans overnight in cold water.
Drain well and pick out any small stones and/or organic material that may have made their way into the packaging.
Now, place the beans with the chicken stock in a slow cooker/crock pot set on high.
Melt the butter in a pan and quickly sauté the celery & onion with a little salt and cook until they start to soften – do not brown these veggies. Add the garlic and cook for an additional minute.
Add the softened celery, onion and garlic to the pot and quickly brown the bacon and add that to the pot as well.
Leave to cook on high for about 6-8 hours (I cooked mine from 10am until 6pm and it was perfect). If you work all day and want to set it up to begin cooking at 7 or 8 am then eat around 6pm...you can cook it on the low heat setting instead.
About 30 minutes before dinner time, scoop out about 2-3 cups of beans (drain as much of the liquid from that as possible), and add the milk before pureeing with an immersion/stick blender and returning that puree to the pot.
Now add the corn and stir to combine, allow this to cook another 20-30 minutes before cutting off the heat and stirring in the parsley.
Taste for seasoning and add salt and/or pepper if needed...I found I didn’t need any additional seasoning at all.