Disaster Relief Recipe! Smokey Southern Pinto Beans & Cornbread FlapJacks!!

Sandy is one mean monster of a storm, but have no fear, our disaster relief recipe is here! In all seriousness, we hope those that were in harm’s way are safe, have the provisions they need, and are hunkered down in a nice dry location.  Those out of harms way still should remain in doors, and why not try to make the best of a bad situation.  Cook up some delicious grub that will keep you satisfied for the long cold and stormy days ahead.   This deep southern rooted recipe has been enjoyed as far back as the great depression, when we really had it tough. With a little love, elbow grease, and fat back,  even the coal miners of east Kentucky knew how to enjoy a good bowl of beans and cornbread.   Continue this tradition and stay warm and dry and curl up by a fire with my (somewhat) healthier , kicked-up smokey version of pinto beans with cornbread flapjacks (Fry bread).

Enjoy, and as always, remember that cooking is about having fun in the kitchen and making tasty memories!

Smokey Southern Pinto Beans & Cornbread Flap Jacks

  • 6 cups Pinto Beans Dried (serves 8-12)
  • 1 TBSP Olive Oil
  • 2 celery stalks (cut in half)
  • 1 carrot (cut in half)
  • 1 onion (small dice)
  • 2 garlic cloves (minced)
  • 1 Smoked Turkey Leg
  • 2 Chipotle Peppers (in Adobo Sauce) seeds removed, minced
  • Salt & Pepper to Taste

Run water over the beans to wash thoroughly and remove any dirt and flecks before cooking.


In a large cast iron enamel pan or dutch oven heat the olive oil on medium high heat. Add the onions and garlic and saute for about a minute or until the onions start to sweat and the garlic is starting to brown. Add the celery and carrot, and turkey leg.


The bottom of the pan may be starting to brown just a bit on the bottom which is perfectly acceptable because once you add in the water all that great flavor and caramelization will go into the beans. Add in the water, enough to fully cover the amount 6 cups of beans (just shy of being half full of water) Allow the water to come to a boil and cook the turkey leg and ingredients Add the beans, chipotle peppers, and a heavy pinch of salt and pepper and simmer in the pot, stirring occasionally for about 2 hours. Be sure to check the water level and add water only after the beans have soaked up a great deal of the liquid. The water should stay a few inches above the beans. Season again to taste, beans are ready when fork tender.



Fried Corn Bread

  • 1 cup Corn Meal (Weisenberger Mill Yellow Corn Meal)
  • 1/2 cup Flour
  • 1 egg
  • 1/4 tsp. baking powder
  • 1/4 tsp. baking soda
  • 1 1/4  cup buttermilk (for healthier version, substitute 2% milk)
  • 1 Tbls. Crisco or “Lard” (for healthier version substitute grapeseed oil)
  • salt/pepper to taste/pinch of sugar to taste

1) Combine all ingredients, except the Crisco, in a bowl, whisk together and leave for a few minutes so the cornmeal will soak up the buttermilk.

2) Melt the Crisco in a skillet (cast iron is preferred) over Med. heat. Drop small ladles of the batter onto the hot oil. When the edges are crisp, flip the cornbread over and continue to cook until browned and crispy on the other side.


3) Remove each piece as it’s done and drain on a towel. Serve warm, and can be held in the refrigerator and toasted for later.

Serve with butter and local honey


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