Old-fashioned baked beans are a New England staple that go hand-in-hand with many other classic New England foods, like brown breador franks, and are often still a Saturday night tradition. The versatility and deliciousness of New England baked beans makes them one of our absolute favorites. This reader-favorite just might be our best baked bean recipe.
1 pound dry beans (navy beans, soldier beans, Great Northern beans, etc.)
3/4 pound salt pork
3 tablespoons molasses
3 tablespoons brown sugar
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon dry mustard
Wash the beans in a colander or strainer; pick over the beans to remove any pebbles or debris. Put in a large saucepan and add water to cover the beans by an inch. Soak overnight.
In the morning, bring the beans to a boil. Boil until the skins break when you blow across a few beans on a spoon. Place a layer of beans in the bottom of a crockery bean pot. Score the salt pork, cutting through the pork but leaving the rind intact. Place about 1/2 pound of the salt pork in the pot. Add most of the remaining beans and water. Place the remaining 1/4 pound of salt pork in the pot. Cover with the remaining beans. Add the molasses, brown sugar, salt, and mustard. Cover with additional water. Place the lid on the pot.
Bake in a 300 degrees F oven for at least 6 hours, adding water as needed. You may want to use a drip pan under the pot in the oven.