I guess his point was that I use canned pork n’ beans in that recipe instead of making the beans from scratch.
Usually I just channel my inner Elsa and “conceal, don’t feel” when I get nasty email but I don’t like anyone thinking I can’t cook something.
I CAN TOO!!
Just because I don’t start from scratch on that recipe doesn’t mean I can’t.
OH, YES I CAN!!
So, guess what I did this weekend? I made real deal, from scratch, homemade Boston baked beans! And, boy oh boy, was it an experience! Those suckers required some lovin’ over many, many hours but in the end it was worth it and now if Jerk Boy ever sends me another email and I can shove this one up his face.
And really, I love having recipes like this to make on those days when it’s cold and wet outside and I’ve got 900 loads of laundry to do. Something that needs tending to is the best kind of recipe to make when you’re keeping time at home!
If you can’t find Hurst’s Great Northern Beans in your local grocery store, ask for them! My grocery store now carries all sorts of products they didn’t have before simply because I asked for them. Just ask the cashier who to talk to to request a product and s/he will point you in the right direction. My store has a list at the Customer Service desk where they notate products their customers' request.
Boston Baked Beans
1 lb. Hurst’s Great Northern Beans (with Ham Flavor)
7 cups water
1 very large white onion, diced
1 pound thick-cut bacon, cut into small pieces
1 cup molasses
1/2 cup brown sugar
1/2 cup ketchup (see note)
2 tablespoons mustard powder
1 tablespoon garlic powder
2 teaspoons black pepper
Combine dried beans (with seasoning packet) and water in a large pot and stir. Bring to a slow boil over medium heat (not high - we want these to cook gently) then reduce heat to low, cover and simmer for 2 hours.
Drain beans, RESERVING LIQUID. Pour liquid into a 2-cup measuring pitcher. You should have right at 2 cups of liquid. If not, add water to make 2 cups. If you have more than 2 cups, just discard the extra.
Combine 2 cups bean liquid, molasses and remaining ingredients then stir well. Set aside.
Using a 2-quart crock, bean pot or baking dish (a deep, bowl-shaped vessel is best), layer onion, bacon and drained beans.
Pour liquid mixture evenly over beans. Like this!!
Cover with a tight-fitting lid or aluminum foil and bake at 325 degrees for 2 hours. Uncover beans, stir, then continue baking, uncovered for 3 hours, stirring occasionally to ensure the top doesn’t brown too much or dry out.
Yes, this seems like a ridiculously long time to bake the beans but it takes this long for the beans to get tender and for that liquid to turn into Boston-baked magic. Remove beans from oven, cover and let sit until sauce thickens (if it’s not thickened already).
Makes approximately 16-18 servings.
- Authentic Boston Baked Beans don’t have ketchup in them but I wanted a touch of acid in here to balance the creamy beans and sweet molasses. If it goes against your religion to put ketchup in Boston Baked Beans, substitute with additional molasses.
- You don’t want to make this in a shallow dish as the sauce will evaporate rather than cook into the beans. If you don’t have any other choice, cook the beans covered for 3 hours (vs 2) then cook uncovered for 2 hours (vs 3).
- I really don't know if these will work in a crock pot since they need to cook uncovered (I think the sauce will stay thin in a slow cooker). If you try it and are successful, comment below to let us know!
- If you can’t find Hurst’s Great Northern Beans in your market, please ask your grocer for them. Until then, you can order them online!
The development of this recipe was sponsored by Hurst's Beans. As always, all opinions are my own.