Not really sure what the story is with these. I don’t really know why these are called “Nelson’s beans” other than the fact that I think a guy named Nelson provided my cousin in Scotland with the recipe. My cousin, in turn came to visit his parents in California where I too happened to be visiting at the time. He made Nelson’s beans, they were great, and I’ve been making them ever since!
Here’s what you will need:
- 1 tbsp olive oil
- 1 – 2 onions sliced (if you can slice them in full circles it would be great, but halves are fine)
- 2 cloves fresh garlic minced
- 2 cans pinto beans (rinsed)
- 2 small or one larger can of tomato paste
- splash of red wine vinegar
- 1 tsp brown sugar
- 2 tbsp of “Mrs Dash” – this is from the original recipe
But instead I used:
- 1 tsp cumin
- 1 tsp chili flakes ( more if you like)
- 1 tbsp oregano
- salt & pepper
Start by heating a large skillet with oil, then add onions and cook till translucent. When the onions have had a good head start, add in the garlic. Then add the spices, either Mrs. Dash or your own combo, mix well. Add the splash of vinegar and brown sugar, then the tomato paste with the same amount of water at the tomato paste can(s). I just use the can and swish it out a bit.
Stir well and let this get nearly to the boil then add the beans. You don’t want to add them too early so they don’t get too mashed up. Stir them in and then let them simmer till heated through.
These can be eaten immediately with some nice crusty bread or as a side dish. They taste even better the next day.
Or even better………cold, right out of the pan when you come home after an evening of “merry-making”!!