Rev 1.07, last revised: 06-Jan-10
A few months ago I threw together a pot of baked beans. It turns out that they hit a resonant chord with my new SIL. Sadly, I was just throwing things together and didn't keep/annotate a recipe. However, since these have become Todd's favorite baked beans, I've done my best to resurrect that lost recipe and have posted it here. Although it works well, it is a first cut...so don't get too invested in it just yet. I've still got some "tuning" to do. Serves about 8 or so...
1-lb great northern or navy beans, soaked overnight in cold water
1-cup onions, chopped (~1-med to large onion)
1-16oz package of sliced bacon, diced
1/4-cup brown sugar
2-Tablespoons dry mustard
1/2-teaspoon cayenne pepper (to taste)
2-Tablespoons cider vinegar
2-Tablespoons tomato paste (or 1-1/2 cups tomato juice or 1/4 cup tomato sauce)
salt, to taste (about a tsp or so)
Drain the beans and place them in a large saucepan. Add fresh water to cover the beans. Bring to a boil over medium heat. Reduce the heat and simmer, uncovered, until the beans are almost tender, 45 minutes to an hour. Drain, reserving liquid. Meanwhile, preheat oven to 250F.
Place the beans in a baking pot or casserole. Stir in the onions, bacon, brown sugar, dry mustard, cayenne, molasses, vinegar, tomato paste and about 1-cup of the reserved cooking liquid (or water).
Bake the beans, uncovered, until very tender, about 4 hours. Check the beans occasionally, while baking and add more of the reserved liquid or water as necessary to prevent the mixture from drying out.
Season with salt to taste.
NB: Given that we spend so much of our time in an RV, all of my recipes have to be made to work in that environment as well. So, instead of the oven, I use a large cast-iron pot. Seems to do the job just fine on the stove top.