I’m a firm believer in the statement that a way to a man’s heart is through his stomach. Approaching 8 years of marriage I can say one of my strongest points is my kitchen abilities. I am the first to recognize that at times I’m not always a peach to live with so somehow this is all working out A OK thanks to what I can produce for our table. I always have that to fall back on.
So the statement, to me, is very true. But you don’t have to always go with the stomach – sometimes it can just start with a smell. And that’s where this little trick comes in.
I can almost guarantee you that if you make this, and put it in your oven at the appropriate time, and your significant other walks in the door that you will have won him/her over. The smell alone will make them swoon and forget that you never ever remember to turn off your curling iron or keep your car clean or bring out the garbage when he travels or that you might have made one too many purchases at say, J Crew or Nordstroms.
The timing has to be right though, so be sure to coordinate with their schedule. I made sure I knew what train M was on, got the oven ready, and then slid my creation into the oven once I knew he’d be in his car driving home. Like clockwork 15 minutes later he walked in the door to what can only be described as one of the best smells in the world. Yes, I’ve still got it.
What IS this creation I’m talking about? Well, it comes from my mom – so we know it’s good. She gave us these amazing blueberry muffins and the best black bean soup ever. This time it’s her ‘California Mexicali Beans.’ I promise you, even if you aren’t a baked bean kind of person (I’m not) the smell alone will win you over. You’ll most likely have a bite or two…and then be hooked. Oh, and they are much better than your standard baked beans you think of sitting in a sad dish at a potluck.
Make them along the side of fajitas (locals, they make awesome ready to sizzle marinaded chicken or steak with veggies at Orchard Prime Meats in LZ), make them on a taco night, make them as a side to juicy burgers. They are crazy easy and your best sure fire bet to gain a point or two back with your significant other. Not that YOU need it….wink wink.
‘California Mexicali Beans’
Recipe from my mom
- 2 16 ounce cans of kidney beans, rinsed and drained
- 8 slices of thick bacon, diced and cooked
- 1/2 cup catsup
- 1/4 tsp ground cumin
- 1/2 cup brown sugar
- 1/2 tsp chili powder
- 1 onion, diced
- 1/2 tsp cumin seed
- 1 cup grated sharp cheddar
Preheat your oven to 400 degrees at just the right time.
Combine all ingredients, except the cheese. Bake for 45 minutes in a covered casserole for 45 minutes. Sprinkle cheese all over the top. Cover again and bake for 15 additional minutes.
Promise it works.