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Canned Vegetable Confessions


Susan in FL
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I've always claimed not to like canned vegetables, and mostly that's true, but after cooking Glory brand canned seasoned collard greens tonight, and really liking them, I was reminded again never to say "never" or "always." These were good. I also like Goya brand beans, if I'm not using dried beans. Anybody else know about this Glory brand, or any other exceptions to the rule that canned vegetables usually don't taste like more than the can?

Life is short; eat the cheese course first.

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I am another Goya brand bean user. They are my usual source of beans for bean salsas. Those are a favorite of the whole family. they can be used as a dip, a side, or a "topping" for fish or a pork chop. That goes for anything from a black bean/mango to a Texas caviar style salsa and everything in between. The Goya brand just seems to hit the right texture... firm yet tender. I also favor having the garbanzos on hand for hummus.

I also surrender to canned creamed corn for the old standy-by Jiffy mix corn "souffle". I do usually use the frozen corn kernels, though.

Then there are the tomato products. There are some things for which there is no substitute for Ro-Tel. And, I would rather have some good canned diced tomatoes rather than tasteless fresh. (I am not a raw tomato eater but I do use them in cooking.)

Canned hominy is in my cupboard for some of those salsas and posole. Those dishes are usually on a whim so I rarely have time to go to Fiesta Mart for the fresh (frozen actually) pozole. (And... BTW... is it spelled with an s or a z? :raz: )

I keep little cans of chopped green chiles on hand... ditto for pimentoes, even though those are in jars.

A review of my pantry says that is about it. I find the quality of these products are acceptable and sometimes very good. Having those available lets me come up with something really good where if I had to do everything from scratch, it wouldn't happen at all.

Unfortunately, a lot of other vegetables are low acid and so have to have acid added (usually citric) to have an acceptable time/temperature processing method. That is why I think things like green beans, asparagus (ugh) are just not acceptable. For those types of things, I head for the freezer case if fresh isn't available.

Linda LaRose aka "fifi"

"Having spent most of my life searching for truth in the excitement of science, I am now in search of the perfectly seared foie gras without any sweet glop." Linda LaRose

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I don't use many canned veggies (too much salt). I do like Progresso black beans. Cook them up with some red wine vinegar - a little ground cumin - and a bay leaf. Ready in 10 minutes. They're fine over rice.

Do you want the stash of canned veggies I bought but didn't use during the hurricanes :smile: ? Robyn

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Fifi: Ro-tel rocks. Gotta have it for chili. Especially the stuff with the jalapeno in it.

Theres also a black beans with jalapeno that I think Ro-tel also makes thats really, really good. Makes a great refried black beans. Or is that a Goya product? I forgot

Jason Perlow

Co-Founder, The Society for Culinary Arts & Letters

offthebroiler.com - Food Blog | View my food photos on Instagram

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Fifi: Ro-tel rocks. Gotta have it for chili. Especially the stuff with the jalapeno in it.

Theres also a black beans with jalapeno that I think Ro-tel also makes thats really, really good. Makes a great refried black beans. Or is that a Goya product? I forgot

And let us not forget that sodium feast of a block of Velveeta and a can of Ro-Tel, nuked and served with chips! :shock:

Yeah... I have used the black beans with jalapeno as well. I am having a senior moment on whether it is Goya or Ro-Tel but something tells me it is Ro-Tel. I don't think I have seen the Goya beans in flavored combos like that.

Linda LaRose aka "fifi"

"Having spent most of my life searching for truth in the excitement of science, I am now in search of the perfectly seared foie gras without any sweet glop." Linda LaRose

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For the little cans of stuff that Fifi mentioned above, my go to brand is El Pato. All of thier stuff is top notch. Their canned tomatoes and chiles are really good, as is the jalapeno salsa (really hot).

And I love Rotel's. How else would one concoct a King Ranch Casserole (now there is a classic use of various canned products if there ever was one)? I can't wait til it cools off and I can make one.

Brooks Hamaker, aka "Mayhaw Man"

There's a train everyday, leaving either way...

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My husband and I used to love eating the greens at a particular restuarant. We finally asked how they did them, and the waitress told us that they used Glory brand. Since then, there are always a can or two up in our cupboard.

I also keep Goya black beans and garbanzos stocked. Recently, I've become infatuated with Mrs. Renfro's Salsas, and there are always copious amounts of Trappey's jalapenos.

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Certain things I always keep stocked.

Canned tomatoes are great, as are canned green chilies (for chili use, or any quick cooking that needs a little kick), as well as mushrooms (canned mushrooms work fine for soups/casseroles and don't spoil inside of a couple days like real mushrooms). I usually buy grocery store brand, sometimes Goya, sometimes ElPato, whatever is cheapest actually, they all taste about the same in my experience.

I also really love Eden's Garden Black Soy Beans. They are a little firm straight out of the can, but cook up very nicely.

I once saw canned jalepenos stuffed with Tuna at a mexican grocery store. Those were great to snack on straight out of the can, alas, I have not seen them again since.

Some vegetables seem unfit for canning. Canned Asparagus in particular has been very dissapointing for me.

He don't mix meat and dairy,

He don't eat humble pie,

So sing a miserere

And hang the bastard high!

- Richard Wilbur and John LaTouche from Candide

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Tins are great! They have got me out of many a pickle.

Lentils as a rules aren't great, but chickpeas, cannelini and borlotti beans are fine.

Good quality tinned peas are good too.

I love animals.

They are delicious.

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I agree with many of you about the horrible amount of salt in so many canned products. I like canned tomato products, especially if the only available tomatoes are of the pink-cardboard variety. Diced canned tomatoes are especially good in mid-winter. Someone mentioned hominy and several have mentioned beans...I always keep cans of these on hand. I like them just fine.

Confessions? I will eat asparagus and peas straight out of the can. Yum! My college roommate would have to leave the room when the asparagus came out, and my family gags at the thought of cold peas and asparagus.

Thanks to whoever mentioned the Jiffy cornbread/creamed corn dish. Sounds good. Haven't made it in a while. lkm

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I'm sensing a trend here with the cans of Goya beans. We always keeps a couple of cans of black beans and chickpeas on hand for that "just in case" event. I also keep cans of chipotles packed in adobo and a combination of canned tomatoes and those in tetrapacks (Pomi).

"Some people see a sheet of seaweed and want to be wrapped in it. I want to see it around a piece of fish."-- William Grimes

"People are bastard-coated bastards, with bastard filling." - Dr. Cox on Scrubs

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Ditto on the Glory product. I just recently discovered these. There Southeren style Pole beans rock! This is the only canned vegetable I've ever had that I don't need to enhance in any way what so ever. No butter, no salt, pepper, or broth.

I'll have to try there greens.

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Glory makes a nice can of green beans with potatoes, too. Here in Chicagoland, a couple of local suppliers provide good canned beans: Dell Alpe and La Preferida. Dell Alpe's canned tomato products are useful, and La Preferida does interesting Mexican-style sauces and chiles, too.

My BF likes cold canned peas with mayonnaise, and his son likes only very well-done, practically grey canned green beans. He turns his nose up at nice crisp fresh ones. I like canned corn, the salt-free kind, but hot and with lots of pepper. For dinner a few days ago, I combined a can of cream-style with a can of whole kernel corn to give it a little texture.

"It is a fact that he once made a tray of spanakopita using Pam rather than melted butter. Still, though, at least he tries." -- David Sedaris
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I use a fair number of canned and jarred veggies, now that I think of it, especially in the winter. Wisconsin isn't a great place to look for fresh veggies then.

Tomatoes, muir glen fire roasted are good, tomato paste, corn, creamed and regular, pimento, artichoke hearts, sundried tomatoes, olives, red peppers, chilis, beans of many varieties. As long as these things aren't stand alone ingredients in a dish they are fine out of the can.

I don't use anything that gets mushy in when canned though. Asparagus, peas, beans, carrots etc... are out.

What's wrong with peanut butter and mustard? What else is a guy supposed to do when we are out of jelly?

-Dad

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I like canned peas too, and (ew!) canned spinach!  I eat the spinach right from the can, sprinkling on vinegar as I go.

Yes, I forgot spinach...unless it's unsalted. Yuk. Glad to know there are others who eat cold green things! lkm

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You all reminded me of the canned product I use more than anything, tomatoes... But of course! I sort of forgot about them. To me, canned tomatoes -- whole, diced, whatever is called for -- vs. fresh is like dried pasta vs. fresh... for certain uses they are preferable to fresh.

I also surrender to canned creamed corn for the old standy-by Jiffy mix corn "souffle". I do usually use the frozen corn kernels, though.
I don't know what that is. Do tell, please.
Then there are the tomato products. There are some things for which there is no substitute for Ro-Tel.
Agreed!
And let us not forget that sodium feast of a block of Velveeta and a can of Ro-Tel...
Yes.
Canned hominy is in my cupboard for some of those salsas and posole. Those dishes are usually on a whim so I rarely have time to go to Fiesta Mart for the fresh (frozen actually) pozole. (And... BTW... is it spelled with an s or a z? :raz: )
I've seen both spellings... I'll try to remember to look that up. Maybe it's like a Dan Quayle thing. :biggrin:

Like most, aside from the canned vegetables we're mentioning, I go for frozen if I don't get fresh.

Do you want the stash of canned veggies I bought but didn't use during the hurricanes  :smile: ?
:laugh: Good one, Robyn. Actually, I have some, including canned potatoes left from the hurricanes, and to go one step further with confessions, once in a great while, as a throw-back from my childhood, I like to fry some of those for breakfast. They are OK if you think of them as something totally different from potatoes, like a whole n'other food. True all these canned things are salty, but I'm bad about salt (meaning, I like it).
Ditto on the Glory product.  I  just recently discovered these.  There Southeren style Pole beans rock!  This is the only canned vegetable I've ever had that I don't need to enhance in any way what so ever. No butter, no salt, pepper, or broth.
Glory makes a nice can of green beans with potatoes, too.

After liking the collards so much, I'll try those.

Life is short; eat the cheese course first.

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The Jiffy Mix corn souffle thing is an old one that I picked up from a friend. It is a perennial favorite around here and it is common for it to show up at pot lucks and church suppers. Hmmm... I wonder if it is one of those "Southern" things? There are probably a jillion versions. The basic is:

1 box Jiffy Corn Muffin Mix

1 egg

1/4 c milk

1 can creamed corn

1 smaller can corn kernels, drained

Then the variations start with what else you add:

jalapenos

sauteed onion

cheese

pimentos

Whatever floats your boat.

Don't over mix. Pam or grease a square baking dish. Bake at 350 for about 45 minutes (I think) or until it is firm in the middle when you poke it. Let cool a little before cutting in squares to serve.

I saw a tip from a chef here a long time ago about the cheese. I was always frustrated with the cheese in this. I would use grated cheese and some of the flavor was there but I wanted to find the cheese. It always got lost. Then this kindly person suggested cutting the cheese into little cubes and let them dry out a bit so that it forms a skin. Then mix them in. Brilliant.

Linda LaRose aka "fifi"

"Having spent most of my life searching for truth in the excitement of science, I am now in search of the perfectly seared foie gras without any sweet glop." Linda LaRose

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I like S&W canned beans and canned diced tomatoes the best - their tomatoes are what convinced me that canned tomatoes weren't all that bad.

Polar canned straw mushrooms, for Tom Kha and Tom Yum soups. (Don't even suggest trying to find fresh around here - it can't be done.) And just about anyone's canned water chestnuts, for a quick addition of crunch.

Marcia.

Don't forget what happened to the man who suddenly got everything he wanted...he lived happily ever after. -- Willy Wonka

eGullet foodblog

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Thank you for posting the recipe, and so quickly, Linda. Yes, I suspect maybe it is one of those Southern Things. :smile: Like you, I'll use frozen corn rather than canned for the kernels. I'll make this next time my son visits. He will love it.

Life is short; eat the cheese course first.

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I always keep canned beans on hand. Sometimes goya, sometimes Ranch Style. Sometimes whatever the heck is on sale.

Ranch Style has a lovely black bean and jalepeno number that is perfect to slap on a tortilla with a little cheese and salsa. Dinner? Done!

Garbanzo beans are another staple.

I like canned spinach with vinigar/pepper sauce. I always have canned tomatoes, tomato sauce and tomato paste as well. Thats about it, I don't have a lot of room for canned goods in my pantry. I'm making chili tonight, so I've got a buncha canned goods sitting on my counter. :hmmm: I've been *meaning* to make it since Sunday. Weird how life gets in the way sometimes, eh?

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And let us not forget that sodium feast of a block of Velveeta and a can of Ro-Tel, nuked and served with chips!  :shock:

Yeah... I have used the black beans with jalapeno as well. I am having a senior moment on whether it is Goya or Ro-Tel but something tells me it is Ro-Tel. I don't think I have seen the Goya beans in flavored combos like that.

I do the Velveeta with Newman's salsa (the latter low in salt). Certainly not for someone with congestive heart failure - but an improvement.

I have tried the Goya black beans before - and find they're watery compared to the Progresso. Robyn

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After reading this thread, I ran out & checked the store this morning & came home with Glory butterbeans & collards (not mixed, of course). We had the butter beans tonight & I thought they were yummy, even though I'm not a huge fan of butterbeans. But trying to get a 5-yr. old to try even 1 butter bean was a nightmare...(of course, at that age, I'm sure I was equally determined to stand my ground).

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Put me down for canned black beans, too. Also, for soups, I use canned tomato paste sometimes.

Canned peas are just shocking, and should not even allowed to retain the 'pea' name. :blink: My mother likes to put canned peas in her cold tuna/pasta salad thing. Thankfully, she knows it's an acquired taste (to say the least!) and doesn't generally do it if she knows someone else will be having the salad.

I do miss Goya products. I found some in a Chinese wholesale market over here, in the American import section. No beans, though. :sad:

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