Sunday, August 8, 2010


Kielbasa in Polish means sausage. A smoked garlicky sausage is what is used in this recipe. I used smoked Polish sausage from the 20th Century Meat Market. If you live in West Michigan, you must go to 20th Century Meat Market on Bridge St. in Grand Rapids. This market was started at the same time the 20th Century started in 1900. My Grandma, who would have been 130 years old this week, shopped at the 20th Century Meat Market. I have been shopping there for over 50 years. Nothing much has changed except the wood floor has been covered over and the owners like me are getting older. Their Polish and German sausages are just SUPERB!!! As is all the meat they sell. When I lived in Missouri, I would take a huge cooler packed with their products back with me in my crowded station wagon. They also sell their sausages and jerky at the Holland Farmer’s Market.

Thick, sweet and meaty beans.  Enjoy!!!!

There are a number of different ways to bake these beans. I like to use a small roaster. I start them around 11am if I want them for dinner. That way they are made and I don’t have to worry getting them ready as well as the rest of the meal. I start them at 350° to get everything hot; then turn the temperature to 200°, open the vent on the cover, and let them cook until they are nice and thick and ready for dinner. It is important that the steam can escape so the beans aren’t watery but thick. If you put them in the oven, I would only cover them for a half an hour with aluminum foil and then remove it to finish baking. If they get thick before you are ready for them, re-cover with foil and leave in a 200° oven. I have read that when cooking beans in a crock pot to put a heavy towel over the crock pot before putting on the lid. (Use a big towel so it doesn’t fall into the pot.) The towel will absorb the steam and allow the beans to thicken up.

Barb is famous in the Village of Fruitport for this wonderful baked bean dish. This is the kind of recipe that when you take it somewhere be sure to take a copy of two of the recipe because someone always asks for it.

1 lb. Kielbasa, smoked sausage, diced
1 (48oz) jar Northern Beans, pinto beans work well too, do not drain
1 medium onion, diced
1 c catsup
¾ c dark brown sugar, packed
¾ c white sugar
2 T mustard
2 T cider vinegar
2 T molasses


SautĂ© diced kielbasa in a fry pan. Drain off any grease. Pour the jar of beans into a large bowl, crock pot or roaster. Do not drain the beans.  Add the rest of the ingredients including the sausage.  If baking in a pan, pour into a 9x13-inch pan and cover with aluminum foil. The following are Barbara’s baking directions. Bake the covered pan in oven at 350° for 2 hours or until thick. If it isn’t thickening up, remove foil for last 30 minutes or so of baking time. In a crock pot, 4 to 5 hours on LOW or 2 to 2 ½ hours on HIGH. NOTE: I do beans in a roaster, 6 hours at 200°.
Diced Kielbasa.

Dice onion.

Saute kielbasa and drain.

Pour beans, without draining, into container of your choice.  I am using a small roaster.

Add rest of ingredients and mix well.

Bake according to directions for container of your choice, 9x13-inch pan, crock pot or roaster.

Beans all thick with the flavors melded into yummy bean heaven.  Enjoy!!

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