If you’re a true New Englander, you’ve probably enjoyed baked beans at some point in your life. Usually served with franks (hotdogs) and brown bread, “Beans and Franks” was a classic Saturday night meal for many families.
Whether you enjoy it the traditional way for dinner or eat it by the spoonful mid-morning, there’s no denying the versatility and deliciousness of this dish. By substituting maple syrup and maple sugar for molasses and brown sugar you create a rich, robust flavor you’ll be reminiscing about for weeks after. (Maybe that’s why people used to eat it every weekend. They just couldn’t get enough of it!)
Maple Baked Beans
- 1 pounds dry red kidney beans
- 1/2 pound salt pork
- 1 large yellow onion, finely chopped
- 1 bay leaf
- 2 tbsp tomato paste
- 1/2 cup Meridan Hill maple syrup
- 1/3 cup Meridan Hill maple sugar
- 2 tsp dry mustard
- 1 ½ cup reserved cooking liquid
- Wash and sort beans, soak overnight submerged in cold water (8-12 hours).
- In the morning, drain the beans and transfer to a large pot.
- Re-fill with water and par-boil beans until skins crack when blown upon (about 45 minutes).
- Remove from heat and rinse again, reserving 2 cups of the cooking liquid.
- Score pork in 1/2-inch squares; do not separate. Fan out and place in bottom of bean pot.
- Mix the remaining ingredients with 1 ½ cups of the cooking liquid and bring to a simmer (about 6 minutes).
- Transfer beans to a bean pot and stir in the sauce.
- Cover and bake at 300° for about six hours, checking regularly after three hours as cooking time varies. If beans are dry, add more of the reserved cooking liquid until at desired consistency.
- Serve hot with frankfurters and brown bread or enjoy alone!