Bacon Bean Dip
This recipe was submitted to us by our friend Michael J. Kirrene IV and this is what he has to say about this delicious recipe:
Years ago while dating my wife, I attended one of her family’s famous BBQ parties which consisted of lots of family and friends, food, and drinks which always lead to an all-day affair of good times. My wife’s mother, a transplant from the Michoacán region of Mexico, who developed her excellent cooking skill from the guidance of her beloved mother, presented a bowl of what looked like a bowl of refried beans and chips.
As soon as she walked away everyone started devouring the bowl of mashed beans. Before the bowl emptied, I grabbed a chip and dug in. What an explosion of flavors; rich, salty, meaty, smoky and slightly sweet with a touch of heat on the tongue. It was absolutely delicious. I almost eat the second bowl all by myself. Years later I found out the dip was from El Salvador and of course the secret ingredient was bacon fat and chorizo. So I decided to change the recipe to only include bacon and bacon fat and I’m telling you it’s just as delicious.
The key to this dish is the epazote. It’s best to use fresh, but if you can’t find fresh use dried but use very little since it’s so potent. If you can’t fine either go ahead and use a couple of bay leafs and dried oregano. Also if you have any left-overs you can use this on sandwiches, tacos, burritos, and tostadas. It’s very versatile.
- 1 cup of dried beans soaked overnight in about 6 cups of water.
- 2 fresh epazote leafs, divided
- 1 1/2 teaspoons sea salt
- 4 peppercorns
- 2 sprigs of fresh oregano
- 2 cloves of garlic, peeled
- 1 Yellow onion, finely dices
- 1 medium tomato, finely dice
- 4 tomatillos, finely dice
- 1 tablespoon smoky paprika
- 2 - 3 dried Japones chili peppers, roasted
- 1 teaspoon apple cider vinegar
- 1 pound of apple wood smoked bacon, chopped
- 5 tablespoons of bacon grease
Add soaked beans to pot and cover with cold water. Add 1 teaspoon salt, epazote or bay leaves, peppercorns, oregano, and garlic. Bring to a boil. Reduce heat, cover and simmer gently until beans are tender but firm. This may take 1-2 hours. Check beans at the 45 min mark, periodically tasting to check for doneness. Reserve bean broth to add to dip.
Chop bacon strips into 1/2 inch cubes. Start with a cold large sauté pan, add bacon and turn stove to medium heat. You'll have to do this in a couple of batches. Remove bacon with a slotted spoon when golden brown and drain on a paper towel. Remove all the fat except for about 4 tablespoons from the pan. Reserve a couple of tablespoons of bacon to finish the dip.
Heat pan on medium high heat until slightly smoking. Add dried japones chili peppers and fry for a minute of two minutes until roasted. Add onions and season with salt and pepper. Sauté until onions are translucent and soft, about 10 minutes. Stir in paprika and cook for a couple of minutes. Add in the diced tomatillo and tomatoes, and cook for about 5-10 more minutes until vegetables are completely integrated.
Reduce heat to medium low and add bacon. Add another tablespoon of bacon grease, then add the beans. Mash the beans until combined. Add a couple of ladles of the bean broth with the vinegar and stir until well incorporated. Cook on low for 10 minutes more. The consistency should be smooth, but slightly thick. Ddd more liquid to get the consistency you prefer.
Top with chopped bacon and chopped tomatoes if desired and serve in a bowl with your favorite tortilla chips.
From the World of Sweet, Sweet Bacon