jerk beef and beans

My cousin Anne Marie is a wonderful cook. Because of our Chinese-Jamaican heritage we both share this obsession with food and its preparation. Anne Marie also loves animals. At last count she has five dogs (mostly pugs) and two cats. Anne Marie lives in South Carolina with her husband Sam, affectionately called Sweetie Pie. She shared this recipe with us, her cousins, and I am sharing it with you.  Anne Marie notes: “Because Sweetie watches his carb intake, lots of times I do not serve this with white rice but with raw [ripe] bananas and roasted veggies.  Tonight’s roasted veggies were carrots and turnips.”  Cut the veggies into 1/4 inch rounds. Roll the veggies in olive oil and season with garlic powder, black pepper, and dill.  Spread on a baking tray and bake until browned and caramelized. I think 30 minutes on the upper rack of the oven ought to do it while the casserole is bubbling beneath it. This is a hearty dish, very filling, and a tad spicy if you aren’t used to jerk seasoning. A note about jerk seasoning:  jerk seasoning is available from West Indian markets but some supermarkets in urban areas do carry it. I am partial to the Walkers Wood brand. Jerk seasoning key ingredients are  allspice (called pimento in Jamaica) and  Scotch Bonnet pepper, a relative of the better known habeñero pepper. If you love the strong earthy flavors of Jamaican cooking, try this. You’ll love it!

Ingredients

3 lb beef shin with bone in, trimmed of excess fat
2 tins black beans with liquid
1 can butter beans, drained
1 large onion, chopped
1 scant teaspoon Walkers Wood Jerk Seasoning plus 1-2 teaspoons more for seasoning meat
2 sprigs thyme, fresh or dried
Salt and pepper

Preparation

Wipe meat clean with a paper towel.  Set aside.  In a large casserole pot with a lid, add two tins of black beans with liquid, chopped onions,  and a scant teaspoon of Walkers Wood Jerk Seasoning.  Sprinkle moderately with salt, black pepper and thyme.  Mix it up.  With rubber gloves on, smear meat on both sides with additional jerk seasoning.  Push down into the black bean mixture.  Cover and place in 350 degree oven for two hours.  Remove casserole from oven when the two hours are up and add drained butter beans. Gently stir into and over the meat.  Cover again and cook another hour. [Cook’s Tip: if you prefer a thinner sauce, add a 1/4 cup of water to the bean mixture and stir.]

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