500g haricot beans
5 tbsp olive oil
4 medium onions, sliced
6 cloves garlic, chopped
2 or 3 dried red chillies, chopped (optional)
3 x 400g tins chopped tomatoes
500g chopped pork items (see below)
1/2 bottle red wine
Soak the haricot beans overnight. The next day, boil them in fresh water for 30 - 40 minutes until they start to soften. Drain the beans and set to one side.
Heat the olive oil in a large pan and then gently fry the onions and garlic until they are soft. Add the chopped meat - what you want here is a mixture of pork items. For example, I used approximately equal quantities of pancetta, chorizo, french saucisson and garlic sausage. Bacon, smoked or plain, is a good addition too. Stir and continue to cook gently for another five minutes.
Add the beans, tomatoes and the wine, and the dried chillies if using. Stir, and then bring to a gentle simmer. Cover, and leave to simmer for about two hours, stirring occasionally. Pour yourself a glass of red wine from the remainder of the bottle, sit back and wait.
This is best if you make it the day before you need it - it improves with keeping.