Saturday, October 5, 2013

Wild Wild West Gauntlets and Cowboy Baked Beans

It's hard to believe it's that time again.  Fall weather and the change in seasons are being felt even here in Southern California where some think there were no changes to the seasons.  But there are changes and the longer I've lived here the more apparent they are.  It's not just that the stores are selling corduroy pants and foil wrapped chocolates shaped like leaves.  It's the tinge of coolness in the mornings, the emergence of rust colored flora, and the golden cast to the light in the evenings.  I treasure these small changes.  Until it gets down right cold in another month or so at which point I start wondering why exactly it was that I wanted cooler weather.  

Over the years I'e found that gauntlets are one of my most used fall/winter accessory and every year I knit several pairs.  The gauntlets I am wearing today I call my Wild Wild West Gauntlets because they are inspired by my love the outdoors and the America west.  And since I was particularly pleased with this design I have written up the pattern which I've made into a free download (link below).  I hope you will enjoy making them and wearing them as much as I have.

Particulars: pattern by Claudia Bugh available as a free pdf download  Wild Wild West Gauntlets; 2 skeins Organik worsted yarn by The Fiber Company (approximately 200 yrds); US 8 circular needles and DPN.

Cowboy Baked Beans Recipe ~

Cowboys practically lived off cooked beans while on the trail.  I know this to be a fact based on my extensive reading of western romance novels.  Ahem.  Intrigued by the notion I have often attempted to make bean soup or baked beans but I've been disappointed with the recipes I've tried.  So I tossed aside my recipes and came up with this way to cook them and I was very happy with the result.  I liked the soft texture and rich flavor and hope you enjoy them cooked this way too. Incidentally, while we try and eat healthfully all the time this is probably one of the healthier recipes I've shared on the blog.


1 1/2 Cups dried Anasazi Beans (found in organic section of grocery story or health food stores)
32 Ounces Chicken Stock
1 diced fresh tomato
1 diced sweet yellow onion
2 Tbs Olive Oil
Kosher sea salt to taste


1.  Wash and sort Anasazi beans.  Not only is this variety of bean very flavorful, it requires no advance pre-soaking.  Place beans into a large stock pot and cover with water and boil for approximately 1 hour or follow package instructions for cooking beans.

2.  Drain beans from water and remove any excess water with a tea towel.  Set cooked beans aside while you perform step 3.

3.  Preheat oven to 350 degrees.  Saute onion in olive oil until slightly caramelized.  In a separate deep pot (oven safe with a lid and preferably cast-iron) combine cooked beans along with the diced tomato and the chicken stock (I use slightly less than a full 32 ounce container of chicken stock).  You want the chicken stock to cover the beans and tomato mixture by approximately 1 inch.  This should be enough moisture to keep the beans moist and still allow the beans to develop a thick sauce as they bake in the oven.  Lastly stir in the sauteed onion and cover pot.

4.  Bake for approximately 2.5 hours and salt to taste.  The beans should be soft at this point and the chicken stock cooked down until level with the beans.

And here's my little buckaroo.  He enjoys these beans too and ate a pot while standing on his hind legs as they were cooling on the counter just the other evening.  I hope his time spent in his crate reflecting on his actions will prevent this from reoccurring.

Until next time, be well and love well and may these days of fall be filled with color, texture and anticipation of the holidays to come.


shabby girl said...

Oh, poor little buckaroo! Obviously, he likes cowboy beans toooo!
Those gauntlets are so pretty! I'd love to give them a try. Yikes, so much to knit and never enough time.

SissySees said...

Oh gosh... I don't know what part I loved best... your lovely gauntlets, the recipe... or the Simcha story. Sissy says training humans not to tempt dogs is a tough job, but she's still at it here too. ;)

Renee said...

lovely gauntlets, thank you for sharing! I'll have to cast these on this weekend as I believe we're in our last warm spell for 2013 here in Ontario.
the autumn air and colours are the very best.
oh Simcha... hopefully you didn't just learn to self reward with yummy counter surfing spoils, lol

gMarie said...

love your armies! What a beautiful pattern.

So sorry your little buckaroo ate your beans. Lucy once ate a pan of scalloped potatoes. g

Cindy Goldstein said...

I enjoy your blog-knitting-animal luv-and food! A transplanted "CA." Girl (northern)..... So for last 20 years am in MI. so these Gauntlets I intend to knit. We have 3dogs and I walk LOTS! I am so making these beans-look yummy. Thanks for the pattern and the bean .recipe..
Back to my needles-

Tracy said...

The gaunTlets are lovely, Claudia! I love the rusty color of yarn--perfect for autumn. :o) THANK YOU for the pattern too! And thank you for the healthy recipe option. ;o) I love beans! And I love western romance novels too! At the moment I'm really enjoying Amish fiction/romance. :o) Happy Autumn Days ((HUG)) (btw, love that cross pendant/necklace you are wearing too!)

knittingdragonflies said...

LOL! Whoa, I bet that had some side effects (the pot of beans). I love the pattern! Going into my queue. I'm finally knitting again, and actually got my wheel out also.
Glad to see you are still here knitting up a storm. It is a typical Oct day in Indiana, the leaves are turning and falling, all wet and waiting to be cleaned up the next sunny day.
Hope you are well, take care

Kristen said...

Oh your little puppy, what a scamp! Wow, thank you for the free pattern, they are beautiful!

Hilary said...

Thank you so much for the awesome pattern AND recipe! I love those gauntlets...the chunky cable is just perfect. Happy October! :)

Bridget said...

Those are fabulous mitts, Claudia! Love the pattern and the yarn that you used.

Baked beans are one of my favorite things, and I am glad that Simcha survived having such a large serving! :-)

Tanya2 said...

Tsk, tsk, Simcha...I'll bet pottying was an adventure for the next few days! Thanks for the gorgeous pattern, Claudia - I am planning to make a pair for one of my sisters for the holidays.

Anonymous said...

You should have named him Cassius, Claudia. He has that lean and hungry look. -:) Chloe

betty said...

Lovely mitts -- very suitable for fall.

I tried out your recipe and the beans were great! My beans didn't soak up much liquid while baking, probably because they absorbed all the water they could during stove top cooking. Next time, I think I will cook them about half the time on the stove before baking.

Thanks for posting the recipe!

Claudia Bugh said...

Thank you all for the fun and supportive comments! I must confess I have become overwhelmed with emails from years of being online and I am not as good at responding as I used to be, but I read and appreciate each comment and thank you for taking the time to do so. Chloe my entire knowledge of the Roman empire comes from the PBS series I Claudius ~ LOL

Claudia Bugh said...

Betty I'm so pleased to hear you tried the recipe and enjoyed it! The long slow cook time should thicken and evaporate a lot of moisture regardless if the beans are already cooked through. Maybe you had a smidgen too much chicken stock to begin with and I would try adding less another time. You can always use an old trick of mine to thicken a sauce that hasn't thicken sufficiently during the cooking process: remove the beans into a separate container and cook the sauce on your stove top at a high temperature stirring constantly until the sauce thickens and evaporates to the consistency you want. Then simply add the beans back to the sauce.

Willow said...

I am so very very late getting around to reading this post and hope you are still paying attention to it.

I plan to send my younger daughter the link to your gauntlets--she will love making them (and if she doesn't have time, I'll knit them up for her).

Love anasazi beans in any recipe :)