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Victoria Trumbull's Boston Baked Beans
The Recipe
Victoria Trumbull's Boston Baked Beans.
Victoria Trumbull's Boston Baked Beans

Victoria Trumbull, the 92-year-old poet/sleuth in the Martha’s Vineyard mystery series by Cynthia Riggs, serves her Boston baked beans every Saturday night, as she has done throughout her long life.

Dried beans are put to soak on Friday night, boiled Saturday morning, then cooked all day Saturday in a crockery bean pot. Serve them for company (or family) on Saturday night with brown bread, hot dogs, and salad, with pie and coffee for dessert.

  • 1 pound dried yellow eye beans (or navy beans)
  • 1/3 cup dark brown sugar
  • 1/4 cup molasses
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon dry mustard
  • chunk of salt pork about 2" x 2" x 2"
  • 1 medium onion

On Friday night, rinse the beans, then put them in a large kettle and cover them with water. Set them aside to soak all night. Saturday morning, boil the beans in the same water until the skins crack when you blow on them. Score the onion and set it in the bottom of the bean pot. Drain the beans, but keep the water you boiled them in. Empty the drained beans into the bean pot. Score the chunk of salt pork and tuck it into the beans, rind side up.

Mix the brown sugar, molasses, salt, and mustard together with some water from the beans. Pour the mixture over the top of the beans in the bean pot. Add the rest of the water and, if necessary, add enough fresh water to cover the beans. Cover the beans and set the bean pot on a pie pan to catch drippings and cook at 300 degrees for five hours, checking occasionally to make sure the beans are still moist. Add water if necessary. Uncover the beans and let them cook uncovered for another hour or until you’re ready to serve. The time is flexible, anywhere from four to seven hours cooking.

Copied from Victoria Trumbull’s much used cookbook

by Cynthia Riggs, May 2009

©2018 by Cynthia Riggs