I've always love baked beans. As a child it was common place that I would have a pile of beans with almost every meal that was served up at home. I expect that this was down to the fact that beans have always been an inexpensive food source, although maybe my parents were simply aware of the health benefits of the beans and wanted them to be in my diet as much as possible.
That's right, the humble baked bean is a nutritional powerhouse of protein, fibre, iron and calcium. It contains carbohydrate that, like that in apples, is of the low GI variety.The tomato sauce covering baked beans is also a good source of lycopene, another powerful antioxidant shown to help prevent heart disease and prostate cancer.The insoluble fibre in baked beans is not digested but moves into the large intestine, or colon, where bacteria act on it and produce short-chain fatty acids.These fatty acids are thought to nourish the colon lining and protect it from carcinogenic (cancer-causing) invaders.
Even now, one of my guilty food pleasures is beans on toast, which I often have for dinner after my late night at work. Recently, Heinz launched Five Beanz, something that they are marketing as baked beans for grown ups. In addition to the haricot bean, Heinz have also packed red kidney, pinto, borlotti, and cannellini to the classic tomato sauce.
I had picked up a couple of tins of Five Beanz at the weekend with the intention of tucking into beans on toast tonight, interested to see what the big deal is with this new grown up version of baked beans. I would love to say that they are the best thing since sliced bread..........but I can't.
Don't get me wrong, they tasted like baked beans and had a slightly different texture due to the mix of beans, but they just aren't Heinz Baked Beans.
My conclusion - if it's not broken, don't fix it. If you love beans on toast, stick to what you know.