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Thursday, June 30, 2011

On my mind: Baked Beans are great for using stuff up; Sweet, Tangy Sausages; and NOT killing spiders!

These Baked Beans with Sweet Potatoes turned out to be quite tasty. Started them in the SunOven but finished them in the indoor oven. Trying to stay good to my vow to do more back-to-back cooking once the oven is heated. In this pic, you can see my frozen Oatmeal Peanut Butter Chocolate Chip Cookie dough thawing behind the bean pot.
Baked Beans after three hours outdoors in the SunOven. Couldn't get the temp over 225°F...too much cloud-cover for much progress some days!
Baked Beans are a great way to use up some stuff. This time, to add to the drained cans of pork-n-beans and black beans, I threw in a couple of minced jalapeños, some diced sweet potatoes, the last dregs of a jar of mustard (water added to clean it out), a tablespoon of some Tomato Jam (very fresh tomato taste but a bit unsettling if you're used to fruit jams), a couple of dashes of Worcestershire sauce and a tablespoon of frozen tomato paste. Emptied daily, we use the blue plastic container with its no-longer airtight seal for gathering scraps for our compost bin.
Eating raw yellow squash from the garden in our salads these days. This was my quick, slow carb lunch when Hubby was out running errands. Really enjoyed this fast and easy Sweet & Tangy Crockpot Sausage, a recipe brought to my attention by Blessings! Almost forgot to add sprouts to this salad (yes, my OWN HOME GROWN sprouts) and unfortunately, I did forget to take another pic of the salad once I added the sprouts. Those are dried cherries, by the way.
Slow cooked some Polish sausages and onions in whole grain mustard, honey, brown sugar and balsamic vinegar. I worried the honey AND brown sugar would make these too sweet, but guess the mustard and vinegar tempered the sweetness, 'cause they were just right! I'm trying to buy organic sausages these days, but first have to use up what's in our freezer. I just mention this to say that this recipe would have been even better with higher quality sausages, but still, this brand bought on sale a couple of months ago tasted pretty darned good cooked in the sweet, tangy sauce!
Okay, this spider I found on one of my cookbooks in the kitchen tripped me out! Fortunately, I was able to carry it outside to our deck without incident (meaning, I didn't scream, faint or get bitten!). Guess I've got a little Jain in me; I don't like to kill anything unless absolutely necessary. Though I want them OUT NOW, I don't usually mind finding spiders in the house, because I've heard that if you never find spiders, it might mean you have a brown recluse. But this spider is weirdly marked, so it worried me more than the more innocuous looking ones. Hope it's not a bad one, but if it is, glad I got it OUT!
   Thanks, Rhonda at down-to-earth, for sharing this On My Mind concept. What's on your mind today? Share your link here or on down-to-earth. 

15 comments:

Patti Bee said...

Your spider looks like a Jumping Spider. Named because they can jump several times their body length. They are fuzzy looking and have unique markings. Not dangerous...they're very common in Florida but can also be found world-wide. I had a spider that lived in my kitchen behind a picture for the longest time. The kids named her Millie. We took her outside after my sister refused to come over anymore.

BLD in MT said...

I've found little spiders that look quite like that at my house too. I agree they are creepier than many. I think any spider with a thickness to it is creepier, especially thick legs. These guys may be small (thank goodness), but the thickness bothers me. That sounds silly when I write it down.

I keep a small jar near the front door specifically for catching and releasing bugs found at home. Sometimes with particularly creepy or large spiders I just put the jar over top and wait for Matt to come home and finish the task of getting the lid on without letting the spider out....

Intellectually I like the spiders because they keep down the other bugs. That is hard to remember though when I feel like shrieking because an arachnid is running over my foot.

Becky said...

HHMMMMmm.... very interesting - I would have never thought to make baked beans with sweet potatoes IN them... have had them as separate side dishes... something NEW to me to try. THANKS!

Judi said...

Those baked beans sound yummy! I love dishes where you use stuff up, but the sweet potatoes are a surprising delicious addition.

I'm terrified of spiders but am much better about dealing with them... though if one of the boys or hubby are around, I always defer to them to take them outside. Good job handling that on your own :)

Wan Sharif said...

You are not suggesting a new use for baked bean ..are you? ;))

Hear Mum Roar said...

That looks delicious!

Hi, I'm Chris said...

Love the baked beans recipe, adds a bit of spice to life. You should produce a video on your cooking methods, I love the concept and would like to learn more.

Maa said...

Don't you just love the slow cooker. It's amazing what you can throw in there and it always comes out a meal! Maa

Practical Parsimony said...

Those spiders look mean, but I hear they are harmless. There is not a pacifist bone in my body when it comes to invaders in my home. However, a spider lived behind the microwave for about a year.

I vacuumed it out when my son was coming for a visit with his wife and kids. I did not want to freak out dil and kids. I put a cup or glass over anything crawling and wait for some guy to come around to "dispose" of the creature.

Actually, the vacuum cleaner is my weapon of choice. No, the eggs from anything will not hatch in the vacuum bag. The air dries them out. Okay, just to be sure, I leave the crevice attachment on the hose and put a piece of duct tape over the narrow space. So far, I have never had a bug live long enough to try to escape out the hose, the only exit from the vacuum.

Mary said...

I love beans! I'll have to try the sweet potato addition.

I've seen those spiders too and like you I don't kill them. I've also had some pretty bad spider bites but they usually just bite when they are confined by a blanket or something like that. Just sayin'.

Andrea said...

Very healthy baked beans! I decided to make sweet italian sausage for the 4th of July...instead of the traditional cook-outs most people have here. spider....they are one creature I tend to squish...although I'm sure they are one creature that actually does good! love,andrea

Food Glorious Food! said...

I love beans and they are super versatile... taste great with anything!! Have a great weekend!

Dayla said...

Hi there,
I see a few people have mentioned that your spider is a jumping spider and I believe so too, they are the cutest spiders in my opinion, great big eyes and they jump, completely harmless.
But please what is a brown recluse?
I am completely puzzled!
Dayla
http://badgerfarmwithdayla.blogspot.com/2011/06/but-we-have-no-badgers.html

Rose said...

I've never really done anything with baked beans other than a basic recipe, thanks for the ideas! And siders. :)

Dmarie said...

thanks for all the comments, you guys. thrilled to know I shouldn't lose sleep over finding a "jumping spider" in the house!!

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