This is a recipe that I haven't made for a long time. I thought of it again when I read Shaheen's post (Allotment 2 Kitchen) recipe for black beans and pineapple stew. She wasn't thrilled with the result of her dish and it reminded me just enough of this one to make me want to try it again. Tonight was a night where I had nothing planned for dinner and not much to work with - the perfect night to bring this dish out.
The original recipe comes from The Moosewood Collective's Moosewood Restaurant Cooks at Home.
When I read the recipe over I felt that it wasn't particularly blog-worthy. This is not fancy food! It is what I would call a "garbage meal" which is my affectionate term for recipes that are great at using up loose ends in your fridge and pantry to prevent waste. It is a great vegan option for a fast weekday meal that can be thrown together with only pantry items or embellished with some veg if you are so inclined.
I will post the unadulterated original recipe ingredients first and follow with my suggestions and the liberties I take. The procedure is the same. The ingredients will seem odd but they work.
Honolulu Skillet Beans
1 large onion, finely chopped
2 tsp cooking oil
4 Cups cooked beans such as Roman or small pink, red, or white beans (2 16oz cans)
2 Tbsp hoisin sauce*
2 tsp prepared yellow mustard
2 Tbsp catsup or tomato paste
1 tbsp soy sauce
1 tsp dark sesame oil
1 tsp ground cumin
grated peel of 1 orange
3/4 Cup fresh or canned crushed pineapple
*In place of hoisin, you can substitute 1 Tb molasses or brown sugar, 1 Tb white vinegar, and 1 tsp of chili oil or hot pepper sauce.
Beans - I use cans of mixed beans, mostly labeled "bean medley" in these parts.
Hoisin - when I fist made this as a starving student years ago, I didn't have hoisin (odd since I lived in China town...) so I used the substitute version. I remembered today that I actually preferred that version. Today I decided to do both and it worked well. I just can't resist an opportunity to put molasses in things.
Sauce - I recommend doubling the sauce. That is a lot of beans and even more than doubling the sauce results in barely coated beans. I don't measure unless I'm baking, so I take many liberties in mixing this up. It's forgiving. I also add a good dose of pineapple juice. Why waste it?
Forgive the bad photos. I was hungry and just don't have the lighting to set up good food pictures. Meh, that's real life.
In a skillet, saute the onions in the oil until soft and begining to brown (if using mushrooms, I add them at the start too).
In a small bowl, stir together all sauce ingredients including cumin.
A collection of condiments you can mash together for this sauce.
Add beans, pineapple and sauce to the pan. Bring to a simmer and heat, stirring occasionally for 10 minutes or so.
Serve. I usually just have it straight up since it's a simple, fast meal, I usually don't have patience for more. I think it would go best with a naan-like bread or maybe brown rice.