How to use a can of baked beans in tomato sauce? I would never miss baked beans and while I don’t (and probably never will) understand the fascination for baked beans on toast, somehow every time I live in London I found myself with a can or two of baked beans in my cupboards, just in case I crave English breakfast or… I run out of food.
Today was one of these days: lunchtime at home, no time for food shopping, fridge pretty empty and I didn’t want pasta (even though I lived in Italy for 6 years I just can’t eat pasta everyday). So I came up with this cheesy bean and potato bake for lunch and I actually enjoyed it very much!
Positive: It’s like a pie, really easy and quick to make. Perfect to use leftovers.
Negative: OK let’s be clear, it’s no gourmet recipe here but I think it’s a nice change instead of eating sandwich or a last-minute pasta.
- 1 can of baked beans (or 3/4)
- 2 potatoes
In your pantry:
- 1 dash of milk or broth
- a teaspoon of butter or oil
- salt, pepper
- breadcrumbs (optional)
Preheat oven to 200°C.
Bring a pot of water to a boil. Peel potatoes and cut into thin slices (so it’ll cook faster). Boil them with a bit of salt for about 5 minutes or until very tender.
When cooked, drain potatoes and mash them with a fork (or whatever you prefer to do mashed potato). Add a dash of (preferably hot) milk, a pinch of salt and a piece of butter if like me, you can’t do mashed potato without it, or just a drizzle of olive oil. Stir well.
Grate some cheddar cheese or just cut into small pieces.
In a small ovenproof dish, pour baked beans to create the first layer. Sprinkle with black pepper.
Cover with mashed potato. I used one yellow potato and one sweet potato.
Add lots of cheese on top. Sprinkle some breadcrumbs too if you want more crispiness.
Bake in oven 5 minutes and about 3 minutes under grill or until you obtain a nice golden crust.
My advice: Now that I enjoyed this basic version, I want to try so many different ways!
- with onions
- carrot and courgette dice
- slices of sausage
- minced beef
- another layer of cheese between beans and mashed potato