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Baked Beans. Mrs. S. A. Powers. Recipe

Baked Beans Recipe by Mrs. S. A. Powers

History of Baked Beans:
Baked beans have a long history dating back to Native American cuisine. Native Americans would slow-cook beans for hours in clay pots, sometimes adding meats such as venison or bear. When colonists arrived in North America, they adapted the traditional Native American recipe and began using pork and molasses. Baked beans quickly became a staple dish in New England and are now enjoyed all over the world.

Fun Facts:
1. Baked beans are often associated with Boston, Massachusetts, where they have been popular since the colonial period.
2. Baked beans are traditionally cooked and served on Saturdays in New England.
3. The original recipe for baked beans contained maple syrup instead of molasses.

Ingredients:
- 1 quart of small white beans
- Water for soaking and boiling
- 1 pound salt pork
- 1 tablespoon molasses
- 1 dash of cayenne pepper
- Black pepper to taste
- Salt (if necessary)

Instructions:
1. Pick over the beans and remove any debris. Rinse the beans thoroughly under cold water.
2. Place the beans in a large bowl and cover with water. Allow the beans to soak overnight.
3. In the morning, drain the soaked beans and transfer them to a pot. Cover the beans with fresh cold water.
4. Bring the water to a boil and cook the beans for half an hour. Drain the beans.
5. Repeat the process of covering the beans with cold water, boiling them until cooked but not broken. This helps ensure the beans are tender yet still hold their shape.
6. Preheat your oven to 325°F (163°C).
7. Place the cooked beans in a baking dish.
8. In the center of the beans, place the parboiled salt pork. Make sure to make incisions in the salt pork to allow the flavors to penetrate.
9. Drizzle the molasses over the beans and salt pork.
10. Add a dash of cayenne pepper for a bit of heat. Adjust the amount according to personal preference.
11. Season with black pepper to taste. You may also add a little salt if necessary, but keep in mind that the salt pork should already provide enough saltiness.
12. Pour part of the liquor in which the salt pork was parboiled over the beans. This will help keep the beans moist during baking.
13. Cover the baking dish and bake the beans in the preheated oven for three hours. The long baking time allows the flavors to meld together and the beans to cook to perfection.
14. After three hours, remove the cover and continue baking for an additional 30 minutes, or until the top of the beans is browned and slightly caramelized.
15. Serve the baked beans hot as a delicious side dish or main course.

Similar Recipe Dishes:
- Boston Baked Beans: A classic New England version of baked beans, often made with navy beans, molasses, brown sugar, and flavored with bacon or salt pork.
- Bush's Baked Beans: A popular commercial brand known for its secret family recipe, which includes navy beans, brown sugar, molasses, and a blend of spices.
- Southern Baked Beans: A southern twist on baked beans, often made with pinto beans, barbecue sauce, ketchup, mustard, bacon, and onions.
- Vegetarian Baked Beans: A meatless version of baked beans, typically made with a variety of beans, tomatoes, onions, molasses, brown sugar, and spices.

Enjoy the rich and flavorful taste of homemade baked beans with this delightful recipe passed down by Mrs. S. A. Powers.

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