Prep 2 hrs
Cook 8 hrs
It was the custom in the early days to put the beans to soak right after dinner every Friday noon. During the supper preparations, the beans were parboiled and the long slow baking process started. This baking continued all night and the following day, adding additional hot water as needed. The cover was not removed to facilitate browning until about a half hour before supper time on Saturday. Boston brown bread was a traditional accompaniment. The leftover beans were served hot for Sunday breakfast with the ever-present codfish cakes or made into Boston baked bean croquettes. Present day cooks might prefer to use the slow cooker. Overnight soaking time not included in preparation time. From the New England chapter of the United States Regional Cookbook, Culinary Arts Institute of Chicago, 1947.
- 1 quart dried white pea beans, picked over
- 3⁄4 lb bacon or 3⁄4 lb salt pork
- 1 tablespoon salt
- 3 tablespoons sugar (optional)
- 1⁄2 teaspoon dry mustard (Coleman's preferred)
- 1⁄3 cup molasses
- 1 cup water, boiling
- Soak beans overnight in water.
- In the morning, drain and cover with 2 quarts of fresh water.
- Heat to simmering point and cook slowly for 1 1/2 hour or until skins burst readily when a bean is removed from the pan and blown upon.
- Cut off one slice of pork and score through the rind in squares.
- Place the slice of pork in the bottom of the bean pot, add the par-boiled beans and bury the other piece of pork in the top portion of the beans, having only the scored rind exposed.
- Mix the salt, sugar, mustard, molasses and boiling water; pour over the beans, adding enough additional boiling water to cover.
- Cover the pot and bake at 250F for 6 to 8 hours, adding additional boiling water as needed.
- Uncover during the last half hour of baking to brown the top.
- Variations: Maine and Cape Cod baked beans; place a peeled onion in the bottom of the bean pot. New Hampshire and Vermont baked beans; use maple syrup or maple sugar in place of the molasses. Connecticut and New York baked beans; add onion and tomato ketchup or chili sauce.
Wow! It had to be a real Yankee dish! Just what I have been looking for! My mom used to make it like this! Thank you so much! I made a double batch and because I am not a big salt consumer it was a little salty for me. Sooooooo......I put a quartered large potato in it, added a little more water and the potato absorbed the extra salt. It was absolutly delicious and the aroma was so tantalizing while it was baking! I highly recommend this recipe! Kudos to lovely chef Molly! Jelly