Pennsylvania Bacon Baked Butter Beans
2 cans lima or butter beans, drained
1 6 oz can tomato paste
1/2 of onion - chopped
1 lb. thick cut bacon, cut up
1/2 to 3/4 cup brown sugar - to taste
1/4 cup water
Pre-heat oven to 350. Fry cut-up bacon pieces over medium-high heat with chopped onion until brown and crisp. Drain most, but not all of grease from pan and return to low heat. Add tomato paste, brown sugar and water to pan with bacon and combine well, stirring until heated through. Add beans and carefully fold them in (don't want to mash them). Transfer all to a greased casserole dish and bake at 350 for one hour, stirring once, until thick and bubbly.
Pairs Well With
OK, before you discover on your own that a butter bean looks and tastes a LOT like a lima bean and start running for the door, please know that before I tried this, I too was a lima hater. This is a recipe I got from my Mother-in-law, a born and raised PA-Dutch cook. She makes this with limas and it has that classic sweet and sour element Pennsylvania-Dutch food is known for....and bacon. If bacon can make liver and onions taste great, just imagine what it can do in a mixture of tomato sauce, bacon fat and brown sugar! This dish will forever change the way you look at the lowly butter/lima bean.