With the advent of grilling season requests for some of our family favorites start to pop up. Homemade baked beans are a favorite comfort food for many folks. This recipe combines the savory flavor of onion, the tartness of the Granny Smith apples, and the sweetness of maple syrup to create an especially delicious offering. It requires some planning — the beans are soaked overnight and the cook time is 5 hours. The only change that I would make to this recipe would be to cut each strip of bacon into 3 or 4 pieces when placing in the casserole. It would make serving so much easier and equitable. Try making this for your next potluck — it will be truly appreciated — I promise!
VERMONT MAPLE BAKED BEANS (Serves 8-10)
- 1 lb. of Navy, Jacob’s Cattle, Yellow Eye and/or Soldier beans
- 4 cups cold tap water
- 1/2 cup Vermont maple syrup
- 1/2 cup packed dark brown sugar
- 1/2 t. onion powder
- 3/4 t. dry mustard
- 2 cups chopped onion (about 2 medium)
- 1 Granny Smith apple (large), cored and coarsely chopped
- Carefully sort through and thoroughly wash beans. Soak beans 4 hours or overnight in water to cover 2 inches. Drain beans and place them in a large pot with 4 cups of cold water. Cover and bring to a boil. Reduce heat to medium low and cook for one hour.
- In a large bowl, stir together the maple syrup, brown sugar, and spices. Add the chopped onion and apple to the maple syrup mixture.
- Fry the eight strips of bacon until crisp. Drain on paper towels.
- Removed cooked beans from heat. Pour the beans (liquid included) into the maple syrup mixture and gently but thoroughly stir to blend.
- Place 1/2 of the beans mixture into a 2-1/2 to 3 quart casserole dish. Lay four pieces of cooked bacon on beans, then add the remaining bean mixture. Top the beans with the remaining four slices of bacon.
- Cover and bake at 300 F. for five hours. Check every 2 hours to add water if necessary.
Note: For Vegetarian Style — Leave out the bacon. Instead, add 1/2 cup of your favorite hickory smoked barbeque sauce at step 2.
~ from PurelyAmerican.com ~