It's a New Orleans tradition to eat red beans and rice on Monday and chef John Besh has perfected a recipe that is comforting and delicious.
Heat the bacon fat in a large heavy-bottomed pot over medium-high heat and sweat the onions, bell peppers, and celery. Once the onions become translucent, add the beans, ham hock, bay leaves, and water to cover by 2 inches.
Raise the heat, bring the water to a boil, then lower the heat and cover the pot. Let the beans slowly simmer for 2 hours, stirring from time to time to make sure they do not stick and adding water to keep them covered by at least an inch. Continue cooking the beans until they become so tender they begin to fall apart and become creamy when stirred.
Remove the ham hock from the pot and take the meat off the bone. Roughly chop and return to the pot. Season with salt, pepper, and Tabasco. Serve the beans in bowls topped with white rice and green onions.
Recipe reprinted with permission from Besh Big Easy: 101 Home Cooked New Orleans Recipes by John Besh/Andrews McMeel Publishing.