Preparation starts the day before for this traditional baked beans side dish.
1 pound dried navy or white beans, washed and picked over
8 cups water
2 ounces salt pork with rind (also called fatback), cut into chunks
1 (12-ounce) bottle beer
1 large onion, chopped
1/2 cup dark or light brown sugar, packed
1/4 cup of your favorite barbecue sauce
1/4 cup molasses
2 tablespoons cider vinegar
1 1/2 tablespoons dry mustard
2 teaspoons salt
1/2 teaspoon ground ginger
Pinch of ground cloves
1 bay leaf
- The day before place beans in a large cooking pot, cover with 8 cups of water and let them soak for 12 hours or overnight.
- The next day, drain the beans. Cover them with fresh water and bring the water to a boil. Reduce the heat and simmer the beans, uncovered, for 45 minutes to 1 hour.
- Meanwhile, place the salt pork chunks in a bowl and cover them with boiling water. Let sit for 5 minutes.
- Preheat the oven to 300°F (150°C).
- In a large bean pot with a lid or similar oven-proof cooking vessel, combine the beans, along with their cooking liquid, beer, onion, barbecue sauce, brown sugar, molasses, vinegar, mustard, salt, ginger, cloves and bay leaf. Mix well. Drain the chunks of salt pork and place each one in a different area of the bean mixture. Cover the pot and place in the preheated oven.
- Bake the beans for 5 hours, stirring every 30 to 45 minutes. The beans should remain covered with liquid as they cook; add more water as necessary to keep them covered.
- Remove the cover from the beans. Bake them for 1 hour more, or until a crust on top forms, but without allowing the beans to become too dry.
Makes 6 to 8 servings.