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Ancient Walls Azore-Style Feijos (Beans)

Portugal, Present day

2 cups dried pink beans, picked over and soaked 8 cups water 3-4 slices bacon, crisply cooked 1 medium yellow onion chopped 2 garlic cloves 1 cinnamon stick 1 teaspoon cumin powder 1 teaspoon coriander seeds 5-6 whole cloves 8 whole allspice 2 bay leaves 6 ounces tomatoes (diced or pureed) salt and pepper

Soak the beans overnight. Cook the bacon or ham hock and drain on paper towel. Next sauté the onion and garlic. Once cooled, break up the bacon into little pieces. In large Dutch oven or in crock pot, combine all the ingredients, including the water, excluding the salt. If using a Dutch oven, simmer the beans on medium-low for about 1 1/2 to 2 hours or until beans are soft. If using a crock-pot simmer on low 8 hours or until beans are soft. Salt the beans once cooked. Adjust seasoning before serving. Now season with salt. Remove whole cloves, cinnamon stick and whole allspice. Great with freshly baked, crusty bread. Tastes even better if prepared one day ahead then warmed.

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