Delicious Boston style baked beans or… Why the Indians went west.

 A humorous look at the history of bean soup and who’s to blame for it.

Beans were a staple food in the eastern American Indian’s diet. Legend has it that in 1604 the famous Indian chief and primitive culinary chef called Sicaya ecamu  [ translated in the Penoc tongue as] “He whose loin cloth waves on its own” and “I have a serious problem” [in the Lakota Sioux tongue] ) gave his baked bean recipe to nearby tribes in retaliation for not leaving tips.

Factually, the Iroquois, Narragansett, Penobscot and other eastern tribes, wrapped their soaked ‘navy’ beans (many small canoe’s filled with methane) in deerskins with venison, bear fat, and maple syrup, and baked them in pits lined with hot stones.

According to a recent finding by someone somewhere, while at someplace, sometime ago, here is an unknown known fact they discovered that occurred in early American history.

When the Pilgrims celebrated the first Thanksgiving in 1621, they invited the local tribes for a blow out three day long pot luck harvest dinner. Previous to this dinner, the Pilgrims had eaten only typically bland English cooking. Since no one has ever heard of such a thing as “Fine English” dining, (then or now), the Indians wisely said they’d bring the beans, turkey, cranberry’s and corn.

Not to be outdone by half naked savages (no, not the French this time) , the Pilgrims brought out their haggis, bangers and mash, bubble and squeak, toad in the hole and spotted Dick. It is believed that it was the spotted Dick that led to the Thanksgiving Massacre soon after the feast was over. The assumed belief is that the Indians misinterpreted the Spotted Dick as a severe case of STD and only meant to quarantine the Pilgrims from their tribes women but things went horribly wrong when the Pilgrims insisted the Indians ‘just try it’.

 Modern excavations have unearthed long wooden tables with haggis and half eaten pork pie still hidden away underneath them. The bones of a dog were found that gave clear evidence that the poor beast had choked to death on a length of ox blood Cumberland sausage. To the great relief of the archeologist no evidence of kidney pie or fish-n-chips was unearthed.     —-Anonymous

By 1830 as expected, after having invented Guinness and Irish Whiskey, the Irish living in Boston soon became major producers of rum. Molasses, the main ingredient for rum, was very plentiful and the Indians recipe for baked beans was soon altered to include molasses in place of maple syrup. At the same time Guinness, Irish whiskey and Rum replaced breast milk in the infant Irish diet. Salt pork was substituted for the bear fat and the famous Boston Baked Beans were born.

Today the Irish / English baked bean recipe still torments us by being commercially manufactured by such companies as, O’Campbell’s, McBush’s and Jones of Arc.

Now… here’s a serious recipe that will surely put a smile on your face (kind of like when a baby has gas).

Ingredients; (I normally double this recipe and freeze the rest in 16oz. containers for future use)

1 pound = 2 cups navy beans (dry)

1/2 pound bacon, chopped up  ( 1-2 Pork flavoring packets can also be used to replace bacon)

1 onion, finely diced

3 tablespoons molasses

2 teaspoons salt

1/4 teaspoon ground black pepper

1/4 teaspoon dry mustard

1/2 cup ketchup

1 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce

1/4 cup brown sugar

Add a Dash of liquid smoke or 1/4 cup of  Hickory smoked BBQ sauce.



 Soak beans overnight in cold water. The next day, simmer the beans in the same water until somewhat tender, approximately ½ hour. Drain and reserve the liquid.

After soaking over night, bring the beans to a boil for 30 minutes

Drain the beans and save the water they were cooked in

Preheat oven to 325 degrees F (165 degrees C for you Europeans).

Place the beans in a large enough crock pot or casserole dish by placing a portion of the beans in the bottom of dish, and layering them with bacon and onion.

In a saucepan, combine molasses, salt, pepper, dry mustard, ketchup, Worcestershire sauce and brown sugar. Bring the mixture to a boil and then immediately pour over beans. Pour in just enough of the reserved bean water on top to cover the beans. Cover the pot with a lid or if using a casserole dish, use foil.

Beans are very starchy. It’s this starch that will act as the glue to form a thick sauce

Bake for 3 to 4 hours in the preheated oven, until beans are tender. Do not cook on the stove top as you will end up with a pot full of mush. Remove the lid about halfway through cooking, and add more liquid if necessary to prevent the beans from becoming dry. If too watery when finished, just drain off some of the liquid. Save it to make sure you don’t need it when the beans begin to cool.

These beans are delicious. Two pounds of dry beans will make 12-14 cups of finished beans. 🙂

14 comments on “Delicious Boston style baked beans or… Why the Indians went west.

  1. Ingrid says:

    Too funny……a bit nervous about trying the recipe after reading the above. Ya lost me at haggis and spotted Dick. Don’t wanna catch anything….lol

    • campfireshadows says:

      Ahhh, then you’ve never heard of the famous Haggis festival in England! Most English food is best forgotten, not eaten. I have no idea what went genetically wrong over there when it came to developing taste budds,
      Any recipe about beans should be written by Universal Edict in a humorous way. The end result of eating beans is way too funny not too!
      PS, the recipe really is good!

  2. redjim99 says:

    How can you speak about fine English food like that? I don’t know, Bangers and Mash, with onion gravy. Shepherds pie, cottage pie, all sorts of good food. 🙂

    Or maybe the full English breakfast, fried bread, beans, fried eggs, sausages, mushrooms, tomatoes, black pudding, with a mug of tea. Breakfast of champions.


    • campfireshadows says:

      Stop it! I think my aorta just passed a ham!
      I’m surprised the English have any blood flowing through their veins with all that cholesterol taking up the room! LOL
      Hmmm, I’ve seen Italian, French, Irish, Russian, Cuban, Indian, Hungarian, Chinese, Japanese, Even African restaurants… but forgive me but I seem to have missed the English one 🙂
      (Only ribbing you. I do make a mean Shepherds Pie!)
      My good friend Jim is in Parliament across the pond. He is required to attend all kinds of social functions (both there and abroad in Canada) where food is served. He once told me he is convinced each function tries to impress the Members (Parliament) by outdoing each other with ‘Fine British Fare’. “I tell you, it’s something I dread”. He loves coming over here where ”God smiled on America and Canada and blessed you both with delicious Kentucky Fried Chicken’ and cursed us with Haggis!” JW 🙂

    • campfireshadows says:

      I’m just glad you aren’t Irish! Since I even lampooned their infant feeding formula! LOL

  3. The recipe sounds tasty!….if one is single ;)….but don’t go knocking the Irish

    • campfireshadows says:

      Dear Plant based McDiet Lady,
      That’s the trouble with beans but that’s also what makes them so funny to write about.
      Oooooo. so you’re Irish are ya now? LOL
      I just went 5 rounds with an Englishman for ripping English food. Boy, you folks bred from across the pond sure get all worked up. The funny part is, I poked the most fun at the Indians and haven’t heard beans back from one (excuse the pun). Oh wait… I’m an Indian! Why I’m so mad at myself now for what I wrote, I’m gonna go ahead and scalp myself…just as soon as I get off work at the Casino! LOL JW

  4. tbnranch says:

    ha ha! I must admit, looks REALLY good!

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