Rockin' Baked Beans
- Extra-virgin olive oil
- 1 large onion, cut into 1/2-inch dice
- 1 green pepper, stem, seeds and pith removed, cut into 1/4-inch dice
- Large pinch crushed red pepper flakes
- Kosher salt
- 4 garlic cloves, smashed and finely chopped
- 2 links Italian sausage, casing removed and crumbled
- 1/2 cup tomato paste
- 1 teaspoon cumin seeds, toasted and ground
- 2 tablespoons Dijon mustard
- 2 tablespoons apple cider vinegar
- 2 tablespoons molasses
- 2 (28-ounce) cans navy beans
- 1 1/2 cups water, plus 1 cup
- 5 slices bacon
Coat an oven-safe pot with olive oil and put over medium-high heat. Add the onions, peppers and crushed red pepper flakes. Season with salt, to taste, and cook until the onions and peppers are soft and aromatic, about 8 to 10 minutes. Add the garlic and cook for another 2 to 3 minutes.
Preheat the oven to 375 degrees F.
Add the sausage and use a spoon to help break it apart. When the sausage is brown, add the tomato paste and cumin and cook for 4 to 5 minutes. Stir in the Dijon, apple cider vinegar, and molasses, then add in the beans and 1 1/2 cups of water. Taste and season with salt, if needed. Bring to boil, then reduce the heat and simmer the beans until they are nice and thick and taste really good, about 15 to 20 minutes. After 20 minutes, add the remaining cup of water.
Top the beans with the bacon slices. Bake until the beans are nice and thick and the bacon is crispy, about 25 to 30 minutes. Remove from the oven and serve.