- 25 minutes
- 8 hours
Here’s a Midwestern spin on the classic Boston Baked Beans, using honey instead of molasses to give the dish a light, fresh flavor. I used a mixed-bean medley in this one because my small crock pot only cooks 3/4 of a pound of beans at a time, leaving me with a little extra dry beans with every batch, so I save them until I have enough for a “medley” dish. For this batch, I used a combination of pinto, Roman and navy beans. Feel free to use all one kind or any combination of medium-sized beans that you prefer. If you want to reduce the fat content, use chunks of lean ham instead of bacon, but I would still brown it in a skillet to bring out the flavor before adding it to the pot.
Cover with water and allow to soak overnight or until beans are plump (at least six hours).
- Next day, preheat oven to 350 degrees.
- Cut bacon strips into quarters.
In a small skillet, render the fat from the bacon.
Allow cooked bacon to drain on paper towel.
Mix soaked beans, rendered bacon, chopped vegetables and honey in a 3-quart kettle or baking dish. Add salt and pepper.
Add 4 cups of hot water. Using hot water allows honey to be evenly distributed.
Cover with lid and place in center rack of oven. Bake 3-4 hours until beans are tender. Stir occasionally to keep ingredients mixed, but don’t worry them too much.
- When beans are tender, reduce oven to 325.
Bake another 2-3 hours, stirring occasionally, until the liquid has reached a syrupy consistency.
- Allow to cool slightly before serving--but they’re good chilled, too.