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Dutch Oven Cowboy Beans by Chili Smith


  1. 14 oz package of Chili Smith Heritage Beans – we like Jacob’s Cattle Gold or maybe Tiger Eye. 
    – Rinse the beans and then soak them for eight to twelve hours in lots of water.
    – Drain the soak water, add a little salt and fresh water to a level just above the beans and bring to boil. Reduce to simmer for 40 minutes or an hour until tender to the touch.
  2. One pound of Bacon Ends and Pieces diced fine.
    – Sautee in a heavy bottom pan – we like cast iron.
  3. One large Onion – Margaret found natural green onions – we use yellow, red, or sweet
    – Dice in ¼ inch pieces and add to bacon until clear.
  4. 3-4 Garlic Cloves or one tablespoon of diced garlic
    – Add to batch and continue sautéing
  5. Add drained beans to mix – some cooks save the cooked beans water for other uses.
    – Fold all together and add sauce.


  1. One – 18 oz bottle of BBQ Sauce – we used KC Masterpiece KC Flavor – I like Stubbs Original brand as well.
  2. 1 or 1 ½ cups catsup
  3. 1 cup honey
  4. ¼ cup Dark Molasses
  5. Kosher or Himalayan Salt, Cracked Pepper, Garlic and Onion Powder to taste

If you like spicy – add some chili powder or crushed jalapeño peppers – I like to add that later for individual taste.

Stir the sauce into the beans and bacon mix and keep at simmer temp or just below for several hours with a lid on.

This can go in an oven at 200 degrees or over coals and covered with soil in a Dutch oven.

Can be served right away and/or refrigerated for great flavor blending.

This can freeze for use later.

You will find a dark, very fragrant, sweet and sour BBQ flavor that is incredible as a side dish with Burgers, Hot Dogs or all by itself for Fourth of July Parties and summer outings.

This will produce about one-half gallon of beans. For larger gatherings simply use a 28 oz package of beans and double the balance of ingredients.

Cowboy Up!

Wade and Margaret were from pioneering families in northern California and like many of the ranchers – then and now – they took their cattle from the valley to the higher elevations of the Sierra Mountain Range during the summer. There is less heat and still, plenty of nutritious green grass and cool, clean snowmelt water in the mountains east of Jonesville long after the grasses of winter and spring had dried in the valley.

Their summer home was an old mountain cabin in a beautiful meadow right on the path the stagecoach had taken years before. The barn and cottage had served as the changing station for horses pulling the stages and livery wagons up the Sierra. This was not an overnight destination in the old days of California – that was the Jonesville Hotel – this was a place to break while the hands changed horses for the next pull on the way towards Reno.

We always looked forward to visiting them because of the history and stories that were shared. Margaret was superb at fly fishing and Fresh Mountain Rainbow Trout were a steady part of their diet as was venison from the deer in the area. They had no indoor plumbing, electricity, propane or anything other than what was used in the days of the stagecoach station.

It was a very cool place to visit, and Wade and Margaret didn’t get many visitors on this all-but-forgotten dirt road. Their days consisted of doing all the chores necessary to live in a remote location and when not tending to cattle and other livestock, there was a small garden patch where fresh vegetables grew when the deer didn’t eat them! Shopping in a town was not even a weekly occurrence so when friends would come with the mail, we always knew to throw in some special items from town!

These were competent, self-sufficient and self-reliant people. There was nothing they could not do and they were great teachers and fun to be around.

After spending the day on horseback or moving some bales of feed from the barn for horses, milking to make butter (and that wonderful, rich, unpasteurized liquid that becomes milk), gathering and splitting wood for the stove and fire, gathering berries that grew naturally (“keep an eye out for the bears” Margaret would warn as we left with our pails…) or picking tiny little apples off trees planted by the original stagecoach workers and then making incredible jams and fresh pies made for big appetites! Oh, what appetites!

One of the staples always on hand was dried beans. Margaret made soups, chili, salads and seemingly everything with beans – and were they ever delicious! There was an outdoor cooking area on warm days and a place to gather around a nice fire on cool evenings and an antique wood-burning stove and oven in the cabin kitchen. What beautiful breads, pies, cobblers, and cakes came out of that thing! Always, always, there was a big cast iron Dutch oven keeping things hot or cooking something wonderful and often that was a simple dish that included beans. That heavy cast iron pot and a metal coffee pot seemed to be ready all the time.

Many times, those ovens were filled with “left-over’s” from other meals and – as cast iron will – took on a unique flavoring, and always good! Frontier cooks just learned to spice, blend and mix to create healthy, filling and deliciously long lasting meals! And the aroma?! Oh, my!

Well, this recipe is based on my memory of those days. It is simple, flavorful, and nutritious and gets better with age! It reminds me of that sweet couple and glorious times of old. Enjoy!

Plant-based Cream of Asparagus Soup ala Twyla

Cream of Asparagus Soup


  • 1 yellow onion, thinly sliced
  • 3-4 cloves garlic, minced
  • 2 pounds asparagus, ends trimmed and chopped
  • 2 cups Flageolet beans (cooked)
  • 6 cups vegetable broth
  • Juice of one lime or to taste
  • salt and pepper, to taste or no salt seasoning


  1. Use water or broth to sauté onions and garlic and cook until onions are translucent about 7 minutes.
  2. Add asparagus, beans and vegetable broth. (See other add variations). Bring to a boil, then reduce heat to a simmer. Simmer for about 10 minutes, until asparagus is tender.
  3. Transfer soup to a blender (this may have to be done in batches) and blend until smooth. Or use an immersion blender for desired consistency.
  4. Return to heat and stir in lime juice, salt, and pepper.
  5. Various toppings:  parsley, ground flax/chia seeds, Mary’s crackers, Flaxers, GF croutons, pumpkin seeds, riced cauliflower, non-dairy sour cream

Variations:  ADD during the peas/potatoes/rice/broccoli/cauliflower/

Delicious on baked potatoes, served over rice, served in a bread bowl, etc.  

Spicy Black Valentine Bean Tacos by Mike S from Folsom, CA

Cooking Beans:

  • 1 lb. Chili Smith Black Valentine Beans
  • 1 tbsp. sea salt or (Sriracha Salt) or mix
  • 1 tsp. black pepper
  • 1 ½ Tbsp. ground cayenne pepper
  • 3 cloves minced garlic
  • 1 chopped Jalapeño pepper
  • 1 tbsp. Italian mixed herbs (Oregano, Thyme, Sage, Basil, Rosemary)
  • 1 lime – squeezed lime juice

Taco Fixins:

  • Corn or flour tortillas
  • Avocado – sliced
  • Sliced cherry tomatoes
  • Sliced or chopped red onion
  • Sliced Jalapeño pepper
  • Salsa or taco sauce
  • Grated Cheese (Or your favorite Vegan cheese)

Soak beans in water for 24-36 hours:

  1. Cover with water and bring to boil
  2. Add ingredients and simmer for 3-4 hours or until beans are tender
  3. Keep liquid covering beans – Stir occasional and add water if needed to cover beans
  4. Taste for added salt or additional cayenne powder
  5. Best if refrigerated overnight and re-heated

Prepare Taco fixins for taco assembly.
Fry corn and flour tortillas in Olive oil until slightly crispy but pliable.
Assemble your taco and enjoy!!

Steve’s Ham Bone Healthy Soup by Chili Smith

Note – This soup can be made with any Chili Smith Heirloom bean, and with or without meat.

Meat and Beans:

  • 1 pound Chili Smith Christmas Lima heirloom beans – presoak 8 – 12 hours in clear water – no salt or seasoning.Rinse and place in heavy bottom pot or pressure cooker with ham bone, ham shanks, ham hocks (or lamb!)
  • 1 quart water – make sure beans are covered
  • 1 Bay Leaf
  • 1 tablespoon Chili Smith Soup Seasoning – Garlic, Lemon Pepper, Oregano, Cumin, Dry Mustard, Salt and Paprika
  • Bring to boil or to 10 pounds pressure and reduce heat to simmering. Cook until tender – approximately 2 hours traditional or 15 – 20 minutes pressure While that is cooking…

Soup and Veggies:

  • Large heavy bottom pot – heat
  • 1 – 2 tablespoons Olive Oil – we like chipotle infused
  • 1 cup each diced sweet and red onion
  • 1 diced shallot

    Lift onions and mix with oil – cook until translucent

  • 1 each – Turnip, Yam and Sweet Potato– peeled and diced in 1” cubes or smaller
  • 2 cups – Summer Squash – I like the already prepared from Mann or Raley’s
  • Lift from bottom of pot to coat with onion/oil mix – WHEN all oil is absorbed…
  • 1 cup Organic Vegetable Broth – OR – beer – we like whatever is local…
  • Stir well and cover and allow steaming for five minutes…
  • 2 tablespoons Chili Smith Soup Seasoning – stirred into 1 cup additional broth – add to veggies and allow to come back to boiling
  • Cook at simmer until veggies are getting softer – NOT – fully cooked…
  • 1 medium (303 size) diced tomatoes in sauce – add entire can and sauce to pot and stir
  • Allow to return to simmer, stir well, cover and shut off until beans and meat are ready…


  • Add meat and beans to soup pot – aren’t you glad you got a BIG one now? – and turn gently from bottom.
  • Bring back to simmer and allow to gently cook for 15 minutes or more until everything is ready!
  • Add a little moisture – water or broth – if needed
  • DO NOT overcook!


It is ready to eat and will be delicious now, but will be even better after is has chilled and rested in the refrigerator overnight.


Sour cream, Corn or Tortilla Chips, Diced Green Onions or jalapeños, Sharp Cheddar Cheese – shredded and excellent with fresh Cornbread…


Freezes very well or can be refrigerated for several days for ‘grab and heat’ quickie meals.

Vegan Sugar-Free Banana Bread Sweetened with Monk Fruit


  • 3 medium/large ripe bananas (About 1 ½ to 2 cups)
  • 1 cup Monk fruit (Sugar substitute.  I found this at Whole Foods)
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1 Vegan egg (1 tablespoon ground flaxseed meal and 2 ½ tablespoons water.Mix well and let stand in the refrigerator for 5 mins before mixing with other ingredients)
  • ¾ cup of unsweetened Almond milk
  • 3 Tablespoons melted coconut oil (I add this last to wet ingredients)
  • 3 ½ teaspoons Baking Powder
  • 1/2 teaspoons sea salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1 1/4 cups of Almond meal
  • 1 1/4 cups of oats (Quick oats are fine.  I used gluten-free quick steel cut oats from Costco)
  • 3/4 cup flour (I used Organic flour from Costco as well, if you have gluten allergies, you can use a gluten free flour mixture)
  • 1/2 cup Chili Smith Lupin Bean Flour
  • Spray oil


Pre-heat oven for 350.

Make Vegan egg in a small bowl and let stand in refrigerator.  Smash bananas well in large bowl, then add sugar.  Mix all wet ingredients together in that same bowl.  Mix together all dry ingredients in a separate bowl.  Add Vegan egg to wet ingredients and mix well.  Add all the dry ingredients into the wet, and mix well.  Pour into a 4-quart oblong Pyrex oil sprayed, baking dish.  (This makes awesome muffins too!)  Bake for about 45 minutes to an hour, or until golden brown.  Serve warm with an ice-cold glass of Almond milk.  Enjoy!

*If making muffins, the cooking time will change.  I’d start out with 25 minutes, or until golden brown.

My kids absolutely love this Banana Bread.  They would never know it doesn’t have eggs or sugar in it.  It tastes moist, sweet and delicious.  It’s packed full of fiber and extra protein with Almond meal, Flax seeds, Steel-cut oats and Lupin bean flour.  Yummy!  It’s a great way to start out the day or for an after-school snack.

Black-And-White Summer Bean Salad Chili Smith – Adopted from Weight Watchers


  • 1 cup white beans – fully cooked They suggest canned, we think ours are more flavorful and nutritious Use Hutterite, White Eye, Rice Bean, Runner Cannellini.
  • 1 cup black beans Black Valentine, Sunset Runner, maybe Hidatsa Red. Think about color and texture along with flavor. Black Calypso, Good Mother Stallard, CHRISTMAS LIMA, and several other Chili Smith heirloom beans will make this formula tasty and beautiful! We did this one with Hidatsa Red, Rice bean and Black Valentine for an almost Red, White and Blue celebration!
  • 1 large tomato, diced – preferably fresh from your garden, or a good neighbor!
  • 1 small onion, diced
  • 1 medium celery rib, diced
  • 2 Tbsp white or red wine vinegar
  • 3 Tbsp minced fresh Italian parsley or basil
  • Salt and Pepper – to taste


  1. Cook, drain and chill beans
  2. In a large bowl, combine beans, tomato, onion and celery. Gently stir in vinegar and sprinkle with parsley or basil; season to taste with salt and pepper.
Serves 4 – Yields 1 cup salad per serving

Chili Smith Christmas Lima Beans with Honey Baked Ham by Carol Radkins


  • 1 pound Chili Smith Christmas Lima Beans
  • About 1.3 of a Honey Baked Ham, including bone
  • 2 cups of water from ham
  • 2 tbs olive oil and 2 tbs butter
  • 1 large diced onion
  • 3 carrots, cut about 1″
  • 3 cups of chicken broth
  • 5 Baby Bok Choy


  1. Soak 1 pound Chili Smith Christmas Lima Beans in fresh water overnight, following package instructions.
  2. Meanwhile, in a separate pot, take about 1/3 of a Honey Baked Ham, including the bone, and simmer for 2 hours, in a large covered pot. Cut excess meat from the bone and set aside. Keep 2 cups of water from ham.
  3. In another large stock pot, sauté with 2 tbs olive oil and 2 tbs butter, 1diced large onion, 3 carrots, cut about 1″ – Until golden brown.
  4. In the large stock pot, add the plumped beans, the cut up ham (including the bone), the 2 cups of ham water, and 2 cups of chicken broth to the sautéed veg. Simmer covered, for another 45 minutes, until beans are tender.
  5. Clean and chop 5 baby Bok Choy, and add to the pot. Simmer for 15 minutes covered, then turn the heat off and let sit for 20 minutes. Salt to taste.


Aloo Mutter with Chili Smith Heirloom Beans

I am a huge Indian food fan. I’ve always loved the complexity of flavors in the food. So I decided to add Chili Smith beans to a favorite recipe to see how it would taste. Delicious is how! I used Yellow Indian, Hutterite and Runner Cannellini at three separate times for this recipe. They all worked great! I have a sneaky suspicion that any bean would work great!



  • 3 medium sized potatoes boiled and chopped into bite-size pieces and cooled
  • 1/2 a package of green peas, thawed (I get mine from Trader Joes)
  • 3 medium-sized tomatoes (You can also use 1 can of chopped tomatoes)
  • 1-2 Medium sized onions, chopped
  • 3 tsp. of garlic paste or cloves minced
  • 2 tsp. of ginger paste (Trader Joes, yet again)
  • 1 chopped chili pepper, seeded and chopped finely (I used a Jalapeno)
  • 1/2 tsp. Turmeric powder (excellent for your liver, and a natural anti-inflammatory)
  • 1/2 cayenne pepper (you can use more, if you like the kick like I do!)
  • 3 tsp. Garam Masala (Now here comes the flavor! I found this at the Sac Co Op, or a health food store that carries bulk spices. It’s delicious and addicting!)
  • 1 tsp. Cumin seeds
  • Pinch of salt to taste
  • 2 TBSP Oil
  • 1/2 pound pre-cooked Chili Smith Heirloom beans (Yellow Indian Woman, Hutterite, Runner Cannellini, Green Flageolet, etc.) You choose!


  1. In a sturdy skillet, preferably cast iron, heat oil over medium/high heat and add Cumin seeds
  2. Cook for about 1 or 2, until lightly brown.
  3. Add garlic and ginger paste to mixture cook for 1 minute
  4. Add onions and jalapeno and cook until lightly browned
  5. Add tomatoes and cook for another minute or two
  6. Add spices one by one, Turmeric, Cayenne, Garam Masala, salt
  7. Mix spices really well turn down to medium heat and let simmer for about 5 minutes
  8. Add ½ package of thawed green peas and ½ pound of Chili Smith Heirloom beans
  9. Add about 2 cups of water or veggie broth (Add more if you’d like more sauce)
  10. Simmer again until water heats and bubbles, about 5 minutes
  11. Add potatoes, again cook until sauce thickens
  12. Turn heat off and let stand for at least 30 minutes.

You can serve with rice or Quinoa, or with nothing at all!

*This is one of those dishes that taste the best the next day, or even the day after that when all the spices have had the chance to marinate and get to know each other well. I sincerely hope you enjoy!

Ann’s Delicious Veggie Soup Recipe


  • 3 – 4 garlic cloves (chopped well or I use Garlic cubes from Trader Joes. You can find them in the freezer section. Makes it very easy.)
  • 2 Basil cubes (Trader Joes)
  • 1 yellow onion (chopped)
  • 2 whole carrots (Halved and chopped)
  • 4 celery stalks (chopped)
  • Fresh green beans (Can also use frozen)
  • 2 medium whole Zucchini (chopped)
  • 1 medium yellow squash (chopped)
  • 1 cup frozen peas
  • 2 cups cooked Chili Smith Runner Cannellini
  • 2 – 3 Quarts Organic Veggie broth (I use Trader Joes)
  • 1 bottle of your Favorite Pasta sauce ( I use Arrabiata sauce from Trader Joe’s for an extra kick)
  • Pinch of salt
  • Olive oil
  • A handful of Kale (chopped into bite-size pieces)
  • Red wine (At least a cup, if not more..)`


  1. On medium heat, heat Olive oil in a large pot.
  2. Add garlic and basil and sauté for about a minute. Add salt.
  3. Add onion and sauté for about 2 minutes.
  4. Add carrots and celery, mix and sauté for another minute or two.
  5. Add entire bottle of pasta sauce and red wine, turn heat up to medium-high and let simmer for about 3 minutes to burn off alcohol.
  6. Add veggie broth (start with two quarts. If you want more broth, add more)
  7. Let simmer for about 5 minutes. Return heat to medium.
  8. Add Runner Cannelini beans and peas. Let simmer about 2 minutes.
  9. Add zucchini, squash, and kale. Let simmer for about 5 minutes.
  10. Turn heat off and let stand for a ½ hour to an hour.
  11. You can eat it alone, or with a nice salad. Also tastes great with a slice of gluten-free bread.

*This is one of those dishes that taste the best the next day, or even the day after that when all the spices have had the chance to marinate and get to know each other well. I sincerely hope you enjoy!

*The longer it sits, the more flavorful it becomes. This soup is best on the 2nd and 3rd day!