Runner recipes: Mike’s northern beans


Destinee Sims

Northern beans are a good source of protein and complex carbohydrates, and can be stored for years prior to cooking.

Destinee Sims, Opinions Editor

Let’s face it, after stores were left with empty shelves, many of us were left with options that we may be unfamiliar with. Having brought home a bag of great northern beans that I had no idea what to do with, my father saved the day and walked me through how to make beans with salt pork.

Now, we hope that this information can continue to help others find ways to utilize what ingredients they can find, as well as feed the whole family. My father’s method of cooking the beans makes the process simple, and doesn’t require constant supervision. This easily customizable recipe is perfect for the college student who needs to be able to multitask while preparing dinner!

Yield: 8-10 servings
Pre-cook soak: 24 hours
Prep time: 10 minutes
Total cook time: 5-8 hours

2lbs. great northern beans
1/3 -¼ lb. salt pork, for flavor
½ onion, diced
Pepper to taste

Start by rinsing the beans under warm water. In a fresh container of water, soak the beans for 24 hours. This helps leech out the dirt and other contaminants. When the beans are done soaking, strain and rinse them with fresh water.

Add the freshly cleaned beans to a large pot and fill the pot with fresh water. The water level should be three inches above the beans. Add the salt pork, as well as any pepper or optional seasonings to your liking. Simmer the beans for 5-8 hours while covered to achieve the desired softness. Make sure to stir the pot occasionally.

When the beans have less than an hour left until they are finished, add the onion to the pot. This will allow the onion to soften without losing too much flavor. Once the beans have achieved the desired softness, they are ready to be served.

The possibilities with these beans are endless. Add hot sauce, cheese, or other fun toppings to add more flavor. These beans work as a meal on their own, or you can add them to your favorite cornbread or biscuit.