Butter Beans and Rice with Bacon

Side Dish

Recipe courtesy of The New Orleans Cookbook

Serves 8

  • 2 lbs dried butter beans, soaked overnight in water twice the depth of beans
  • 2 cups onion, chopped
  • 2 teaspoons celery leaves, minced
  • 2 tablespoons parsley, minced
  • 1 tablespoon garlic, minced
  • 1 lb slab bacon, cut into 3/4 inch cubes
  • 1 lb ham cut into 1 inch cubes
  • 5  teaspoons salt
  • 1 teaspoon black pepper, fresh ground always best
  • 1/8 teaspoon cayenne
  • 3 whole bay leaves, broken into  3 pieces each
  • 3/4 teaspoon dried thyme
  • 1/8 teaspoon dried marjoram
  • 1/8 teaspoon mace
  • boiled rice

Butter Beans and Rice with Bacon

Click image to enlarge 


Drain the soaked beans in collander, rinse and add them along with all the other ingredients to  a 10 quart kettle. Use just enough cold water to barely cover beans.
Bring to boil over high heat, lower heat and simmer for about  2 hours or until beans are tender but not mushy. (If they absorbed enough water over night they will take less than 2 hours to cook)
Taste a bean, it should be creamy in texture but still have some "chew to it". Stir frequently and scrape sides and bottom of kettle to prevent scorching. When beans are cooked remove from heat and let cool for 20 minutes.
Cover pot and let stand for 2 hours at room temperature.

When you are ready to serve, ladle just the amount you plan to use in that meal into a saucepan and heat them slowly over low heat, stirring frequently until they are very hot. About 1½ cups per person is good estimate for what you'll need for a meal. Add a bit of water if the mixture seems too dry.

Serve over boiled rice.

Note: Should you have beans left over from your meal, do not add them back with the others, they will spoil the flavor and texture of the whole batch.


Louisiana Recipes Weekly


Every Thursday you'll receive new recipes, events & festivals and more. See archive