Thursday, September 15, 2022

Pinto Beans, Hoe Cakes, and Birthday Meals

This post is primarily to get our pinto bean recipe documented on my blog. For our pinto beans, we’ve always just added stuff to taste so they rarely taste the same and some are better than others so this time, I tried to make a good batch and document the recipe.  I looked around the web to see what ingredients were used by others and came up with the following recipe.

Pinto Beans


2 lb. pinto beans, soaked overnight

1 piece smoked country ham hock

1 cup diced green pepper

1 cup diced onion

1 tsp k. salt + more to taste

1 tsp, pepper

2 tsp. paprika

2 tsp. Tiger Seasoning

2 bay leaves

Water to cover beans by a couple of inches and more as needed


1. Add hocks to a large pot, cover with water bring to a boil then simmer for an hour.

2. Add beans, water, and seasonings, bring to a boil then simmer until beans are tender, adding additional water if needed and to get the amount of liquid you like.

3. When ham hock is very tender, remove it from the beans, shred and chop the meat into small pieces and return them to the pot.

4. Taste and add salt if needed (depends on amount of salt in hock)

Hoe Cakes

 For this meal we also had hoe cakes, I used the following recipe from "Southern Eats and Goodies."

Hoe Cakes


½ cup fine cornmeal

½ cup buttermilk

1 sml egg

¼ tsp baking powder

½ tsp salt

Vegetable oil or rendered bacon fat for frying.


1. Stir together the cornmeal, baking powder, and salt in a medium bowl.

2. In a separate large bowl, whisk the eggs and buttermilk together until fully combined.  Stir the cornmeal mixture into the wet ingredients until smooth.

3. Let the hoe cake batter rest for about 10 minutes, to thicken.

4. Add the vegetable oil or bacon grease to your skillet or griddle and place on medium high heat.

5. Place spoonfuls of the batter into the skillet on the griddle for the size you want. Fry the cakes until bubbles appear on the tops and their edges are cooked. Then flip each of the corn cakes and cook the other side until golden brown. Repeat with the remaining batter.

I plated two cakes then topped with beans and diced onion.


The beans were as good as any we’ve ever made and this will be our recipe going forward.  The hoe cakes were good and maybe a little simpler than a pan of cornbread but I think I will use Bev’s Mexican cornbread recipe next time.

I was willing to just forget my birthday and have our normal meals, but Bev had been wanting to have biscuits and gravy so I made up the sausage gravy and Bev made the biscuits using the recipe from Saving Room ForDessert.

For supper it was hamburgers and I made my first walk to the grill, at 75% weight baring, to cook them.

As you can tell, we ate very well for my birthday and I probably gained a pound.

HELP: For this meal we used regular HB buns and mine was totaled by halfway thru the sandwich.  What bun holds up best for you?

Photos can be enlarged by clicking on them and the blue words are links.

Have a great day and thanks for stopping by Almost Heaven South.


09/9/22 meal date


  1. Happy birthday! Such a bunch of tasty grub. The sausage gravy breakfast has me drooling. I have found that kaiser or brioche buns hold up better for juicy burgers but I've always been a fan of the old school sesame seed buns.

  2. Larry, You certainly ate well on your birthday! I'll take 4 or 5 hoecakes with butter and syrup plus a side of Bev's biscuits and your great looking sausage gravy... Better looking sausage gravy than Larry makes at Mama's Grits/aka Little Italy and its really good. Of course Bev's biscuits are much better too! We just got back from a 10 road trip and I'm trying to catch up with my reading... Lots of bogging material from the trip too. Take Care, Big Daddy Dave

  3. Happy Birthday and congrats on that walk to the grill. Guess I'm going to have to look for tiger seasoning.


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