Campsite Kettle Beans with Bacon and Mushrooms

I found this recipe two days before our camping trip in a Country magazine at the library…it sounded fantastic so we zipped over to the grocery store and bought the ingredients. Turned out to be even more delicious than I hoped! And perfect for fixing ahead and packing the canned goods along to add at the last minute. Just don’t forget to pack a can opener!

Kettle Cooked White Beans with Rosemary

  • 2 cups mushrooms, quartered
  • 4 slices bacon, finely chopped
  • 3 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons fennel seeds, crushed
  • 1 teaspoon mustard seeds
  • 1 Tablespoon tomato paste concentrate OR 2 Tablespoons tomato paste
  • 1 14.5 ounce can diced tomatoes with basil, garlic and oregano
  • 2 sprigs fresh rosemary
  • 3 Tablespoons balsamic vinegar
  • 2 15.5 ounce cans butter beans, rinsed and drained
  • 1 15 ounce can cannellini beans, rinsed and drained
  • kosher salt, optional
  • 2 Tablespoons virgin olive oil

In a large skillet, cook mushrooms and bacon over medium-high heat, stirring often till bacon begins to brown around edges and mushrooms are tender, 3-4 minutes. Drain most of fat, leaving one tablespoon.

Stir in garlic, fennel seeds, and mustard seeds. Cook until fragrant, about one minute. Add tomato paste and let cook for 30 seconds.

***the above I did ahead of time and froze for the camping trip in a small Gladware container–then I just took the rest of the ingredients with me and added them to it when we were about ready to eat***

Add undrained tomatoes, rosemary and balsamic vinegar. Bring to boiling. Gently fold in the beans. Reduce heat. Simmer, covered, for ten minutes. Remove rosemary, season to taste with salt and drizzle with oil. Serve or pack in a gallon sized ziplock and keep chilled. Makes eight 2/3 cup servings.

I doubled the whole recipe, wanting enough to feed the five of us and the eight in my friend’s family. Our plan A was to camp together, or at least have them come to our campfire for one of the meals. Alas, the rain kept us from camping, but we enjoyed the beans anyway…along with bacon cheeseburgers, salad and watermelon! And for the record, I’m pretty glad it rained. The nearest campsite to our friends was forty minutes away, and we girls wouldn’t have had near the capacity for heart-to-hearts…not to mention the time and gas wasted in commuting to and fro.

Anyway, this would be a perfect side for a fourth of July picnic!

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