Maine Baked Beans
Yellow Eye Beans
Salt Pork (or Butter if preferred)
Sugar (regular or brown, etc.)
1. Wash 1 pound Yellow Eye Beans. Cover with cold water and soak overnight.
2. In the morning, drain beans then place in a pot with enough cold water to cover. Add 1/2 teaspoon baking soda. Boil for about 15 minutes.
3. Drain using colander (save this liquid for later use) then rinse beans with cold water.
4. Preheat oven to a very slow 275 - 285 F.
5. Cut two approximately 1 inch square sections from the salt pork then make about 1/4 inch cuts in one direction down to, but not cutting through, the rind.
6. Now, put one of these sections and 1 whole onion (peeled and cut in half) on the bottom of a 1 quart casserole or bean pot. Add the drained beans then top with the other section of salt pork and 1 tablespoon butter (2-3 tablespoons if no salt pork is used).
7. Combine in a separate container: 1/4 cup sugar, 1/3 cup molasses, 1 teaspoon dry mustard, 1 teaspoon salt, 1/4 teaspoon pepper, and 1/2 cup hot water. Mix thoroughly then set aside.
8. Add half of the saved liquid (from when the beans were boiled) to the casserole or bean pot. Add any additional regular water as necessary to bring the water level up to, but not covering, the top level of beans.
9. Pour about one quarter of the mixture (from number 7 above) over the top of the beans.
10. Cover, then place the beans in the preheated oven. Bake for 5 hours. About every 1-1/2 hours add enough saved liquid so that the water level is at the mid point of the top layer of beans. Add some of the basting mixture over the top of the beans each time.
11. When beans have cooked for 5 hours, remove the cover and let them bake for about 45 more minutes without adding any liquid so that the top layer of beans get browned.
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