Pork and Bean Casserole

Bean casseroles and soups have been my favourite dishes since I was a child. They are very popular in Bulgaria. In this recipe I am also using pork cheeks and pork ribs for extra flavour. These are very cheap cuts of pork that work amazingly well in slow cooked stews and casseroles. I hope you enjoy my recipe! 😉

Ingredients for 4-6 people:

  • 400 g white beans
  • 4 cloves of garlic
  • 2 large leeks
  • 2 carrots
  • 1 celery stick
  • 400 g pork cheeks
  • 400 g pork ribs
  • 2 tbsp olive oil
  • 1 tbsp paprika (use smoked paprika if you’ve got it)
  • a sprinkle of dry thyme
  • 1 tsp dry oregano
  • 1 tsp dry savory
  • 1 tbsp  dry mint
  • 1 tbsp tomato puree
  • water
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • optional a small bunch of fresh parsley
You will also need a clay pot or a heavy based casserole pot.

Cooking Method:

Soak the beans overnight. On the next day, chop all the vegetables small and set aside. Prepare the pork by cutting the ribs into small bite size chunks. Cut off the sinew from the cheeks (the white tissue on one side) and cut into little chunks.

Set the oven on 160 C. Heat the oil in the casserole pot and brown off the meat. Add the chopped vegetables and sweat them on low heat for 5 minutes. Add the tomato paste and all the seasoning and cook for a further minute. Add the beans and cover with water about 1 inch above everything. Bring to the boil, cover the pot and place in the preheated oven.

Cook for 2-3 hours or until the meat is falling apart and the beans are soft. Check it after an hour or so and make sure there is enough liquid so the casserole doesn’t burn. When it’s ready you should be left with a thick casserole with almost no liquid. Serve warm sprinkled with fresh parsley.


I hope you enjoy my recipe, please let me know what you think!

One thought on “Pork and Bean Casserole

  1. That reads so well. It’s funny that back in the early part of the century (last, not this), a low grade boer would be known as a “Pork ‘n Beaner” because he would fight for a bowl of the above. There would have been a few more of them at it if they had followed this recipe.

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