Best Baked Bean Recipe ?
I thought I'd revive this thread. Yesterday I made Jasper White's baked bean recipe. (There are two of his online, but I chose the most recent one.) Jasper has lots of old-school New England cooking cred, so I thought his recipe would be worth a try. The beans were excellent and this will become my go-to recipe.
Here's the link from Fine Cooking:
I soak the beans overnight, then cook them til almost soft in the crockpot.
Add molasses, brown sugar, ketchup, cinnamon, onion, and a few dashes of Tabasco. Let cook until beans are soft.
We have a huge 4th of July party every year here in France, and I've been begged for my recipe every year.
(the cinnamon is inspired by the beans at Big John's Alabama Barbecue in Tampa...best beans evar.)
A good history of baked beans / beans in the U.S.
appeared in a series of articles in the Los Angeles
Metropolitan News-Enterprise newspaper in 2006 by
their editor, Robert M. Grace.
Baked Beans: Originated by Indians, Not Bostonians
Baked Beans: Exalted by New Englanders in 1800s
Baked Beans Win Favor With Soldiers in the Civil War
History of Van Camp’s Beans Is Utterly Mangled
ConAgra Doesn’t Know Beans About Van Camp’s History
Did Gilbert Van Camp Sell Beans to Union Army?
Canned Baked Beans Become a ‘Freak’ in Late 1870s
Cans of Baked Beans Produced On Mass Scale in 1878
U.S. High Court Decides What Beans Are
Beans…Bake ’Em, Boil ’Em, Use ’Em in Desserts
Was It Van Camp’s Wife Who Added the Tomato to Beans?
For more food stories, click on "Food" in the Reminiscing
window on the right:
These are excellent and unusual. If you don't like the idea of the red sauce (and I doctor it with chili powder, bourbon, etc.), you can use whatever favorite bbq sauce you want. The key is the onion and bacon that slowly renders delicious sweet and smokiness into the beans: http://www.epicurious.com/recipes/foo...
I make an easy barbecue beans dish for potlucks that's easy to double or multiply -
in a little butter, olive oil, or a bit of both, cook chopped onions till softened.
Add a mostly-drained can of vegetarian baked beans (Hunt's, I think), and a bunch of stuff to taste: most importantly, lots of cumin and Sweet Baby Ray's barbecue sauce; salt, pepper, garlic, pimentos, parsley, and I have a "cajun spices" powder mix I like to add a dash of. stir/taste till hot and ready.
Sorry, our family and friends prefer the old Boston Baked Beans style. On an older thread, other Chowhounds said I was using too much sugar so I've cut back on sugar in this recipe from the National Grange's Bicentennial Cookbook. The recipe came from a lady in Rhode Island. Before you start, get yourself some good dry beans. In our area, I prefer the State of Maine yellow eyes or soldier beans that come in 2 lb packages. This recipe is suppose to serve 15. I have to use two bean pots since I don't have a big one. That's the other thing, I think they taste better if cooked in a bean pot. Also some people don't care for kidney beans. When the Grange does a ham and bean supper here in town, they usually make two huges batches so people have a choice between kidney and pea beans. They make the beans in large electric roasters.
Easy Baked Beans
2 lbs dry beans (recipe suggests pea beans)
1 med onion, chopped
1/2 C sugar
4 tsp salt
2 tsp dry mustard
1/2 C (scant) molasses
1/2 lb salt pork
Soak the beans overnight. Drain. I fry the salt pork until it is lightly browned. I put all the ingredients except beans and pork in the bottom of the bean pot. Mix, then pour half into the second bean pot. Then I put half the salt pork in each pot. Then add the drained beans. Add water to cover. Put the lids on the pots and bake in a 250 deg oven for up to 8 hours. I check during the day to make sure the beans stay covered with water, adding more if necessary. Sometimes the beans are done after 5 or 6 hours. If you spoon some up and blow on them and the skin breaks, they are done. But I also taste. You don't want to cook too long or they will get mushy.
not bad, d frost, but to quibble just a bit: i leave my onion whole, i use more molasses (1/2c /lb of beans), less sugar (1 TBS/lb beans), always brown, not white sugar, and quickly blanch don't fry the salt pork, 1 tsp salt/lb beans, sometimes if the beans are very dry i parboil them, and use the reserved liquid from the boil as my cooking liquid.
I've made the kind that you soak the dry beans, and done other experiments. But the ones that people seem to like the best, or at least the people who have come to our home for parties, reunions,etc. are just Van Camp's pork and beans, with dark brown sugar,molasses,onion and ketchup added to it and bacon on top. It's simple redneck baked beans but I always have people asking me to make baked beans. Of course I guess they're just simple rednecks too, but this is what works around here.
Linda's Old-fashioned Maple Baked Beans
1 lb dried navy beans
1/2 large onion, finely chopped
1 cup maple syrup
1/2 cup chili sauce
2 tsp dry mustard
1/2 tsp salt
1/2 tsp freshly ground black pepper
1/4 lb salt pork, scored 1/4" deep on the fat side of of the salt pork
1 1/2 cups boiling water
2 Tbsp tomato paste, if needed
1. The day before, pick through the beans to make sure no dirt or small stones remain. Place in a 4-qt. stockpot and cover with water, making sure water is at least 2" over top of beans. Cover, and let soak overnight. Drain in a colander.
2. Preheat oven to 300°F.
3. Place beans back into oven-proof stockpot and mix in the onions. In a separate bowl, mix together maple syrup, chili sauce, dry mustard, salt, and pepper. Pour over beans and onions, place scored salt pork on top, and pour in boiling water. Stir well, and cover.
4. Bake in preheated oven for 5-6 hours, stirring every few hours. Three-quarters of the way through cooking, add some or all of the tomato paste if needed for thickening, stirring in well to blend. Bake for another hour or so, until sauce is thickened.
5. ***NOTE***: This could also be cooked in a slow cooker for about 8-10 hours until done, adding tomato paste about halfway through cooking.
canned pie filling???
I must say I am dubious. . .
Anyway. . . if a bean recipe is worth its weight in beans it will include healthy doses of pork. Bacon/salt pork/ham hock etc.
stay simple. not sure what "fancy molasses" is though. might be a quebecism.
oh yet another edit, if you are making beans for a big group it is more economical to get dried beans.