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    Tuesday, November 12, 2013

    Molasses Slow Cooked Beans (Crock Pot) [RECIPE]

    This is my variation of a family recipe that is always a hit.  These beans can be eaten cold, but they are fabulous warm/hot.  And if you let them sit a day, they’re even better as leftovers! The flavors really get a chance to meld if they sit a day or two before serving. I'm still working on the converting the recipe from using canned beans to re-hydrating dried beans, but this version is nice & simple...and works like a charm! I made this recipe (using the canned beans) for my Civil War Event last weekend and they were a huge hit. Hope you give it a try! – Becky/MarcailGaelyn

    Pot of Molasses Beans made 6/30/2011

    Molasses Slow Cooked Beans (Crock Pot)



    1 lb of Bacon (cooked crispy & broken into chunks/pieces)

    ¼ C. Ham, diced

    1 Yellow Onion, chopped/diced

    4  (15oz) cans of Beans, rinsed & drained

      Ex.: 1 can of each of the following: Red Kidney Beans, Black Beans, Small White Beans, & Great Northern Beans

    ½ C. Molasses

    ½ C. Ketchup

    1 Tsp Mustard (my personal preference is Maille brand, “Original, Hot” which is imported from France.)

    Dash of Worcester Sauce

    Salt & Pepper to Taste. (For Black Pepper Allergies, substitute White Pepper instead.)


    1.      Brown/Cook to the crispy stage your bacon. [I prefer the oven (see below for oven method).] Once the bacon is cool enough to touch, crumble the bacon into chunks & small pieces and set aside. Reserve some of the bacon grease for cooking the onion (next step).

    a.       Oven Method for Cooking Bacon:

                                                                  i.      lay your bacon in a single layer on a foil-covered -& lined with parchment paper- sheet pan

                                                                ii.      cook for 20-30 minutes (or until done) in a 425 Degree oven. Be sure to check on it so it doesn’t burn!

                                                              iii.      Remove pieces from the fat to drain while it cools.

    2.      After dicing up the onion, sauté it in some bacon grease (just enough to lubricate the pan, not enough to deep fry the onions!) until the onions become translucent and begin to brown on the edges.

    3.      Rinse & drain the beans, then add to the crock pot.

    4.      Add in the Bacon, Ham, Onion, Molasses, Ketchup, Mustard, Worcester Sauce, Salt & Pepper and mix thoroughly.

    5.      Cover with lid, turn on the Slow Cooker to LOW and let it cook for 6 hours to 10 hours. (I often have these cooking for 10 hours while I’m gone for work on a work day.)


    Wednesday, November 06, 2013

    Molasses Baked Beans...were a disaster. (Still learning how to use re-hydrated beans.)

    So I was all excited about an 'easy' family recipe for Molasses Slow Cooked/Baked Beans that I was going to make in advance for the weekend (and bring to my Civil War event). The beans always turn out well and I even like them cold.

    This time I decided *instead of using canned beans* (what I grew up using & my recipe assumes), I'd try making this batch from scratch using re-hydrated dried beans. Something different, and a challenge for me (as I haven't had much practice cooking using re-hydrated dried beans. It's something I should get more comfortable using, so I need to make recipes using them to "practice".)

    So Monday night I got out a mix of dried beans that seamed like they'd be good together, measured them out (I measured out too much, first mistake!), and set them to soak overnight. In the morning I drained & rinsed, then set them to soak some more while I was at work.

    Tuesday I cooked up my bacon (in the oven - I like it crisp) and drained the soaking beans & put them in a resealable bag for the fridge. Wednesday morning I assembled all my ingredients (trying to estimate how much more on the sauce ingredients because I had re-hydrated a tad too many beans) and set the mixture in my crock-pot on low and left for work.

    Big Mistake.

    I didn't adjust enough for the uncooked re-hydrated beans. I forgot that on my last recipe using re-hydrated beans I had to boil them first before slow cooking, so I didn't do that this time. Nor did I put any of the reserved liquid into the crock pot (to add extra liquid to compensate for the re-hydrated beans) for while I was gone all day. They were dry and not done.


    Plus I used Great Northern Beans (which I hadn't used before) and I think they have a different cooking time than the other beans - black, red, pink, & small white beans. (Nothing against the Northern Beans, just a factor I didn't take into consideration.)

    I tried added more liquid (water plus more of the sauce ingredients - molasses, ketchup, Worcester sauce, mustard, & salt/pepper) and let it cook an hour or 2 on high last night so it was bubbling. Then back to low for overnight....they're better, but I still get a few beans not quite done...and I've got a bit of a bitter taste. Boo!

    Realistically - I think I need to toss this pot of beans and start over. I don't think I can 'pull out' the bitter taste.

    To say I'm disappointed (in the beans but mainly in myself for forgetting key steps after I did all that work) is an understatement.

    I think if I had taken the time to boil the rehydrated beans before mixing it recipe up & setting it to slow cook (and used the reserved liquid from the boiling process), my beans would have turned out. Live & Learn. :)

    At least my test batch of gluten-free pancakes this morning (testing out a mix I picked up, that I want to bring to the event this weekend) came out beautifully. One small good thing in a disappointing morning.