Food - Drink
Why It’s Dangerous To Make Boston Baked Beans The Traditional Way
If you've ever wondered how Boston earned its nickname Beantown, you probably haven't tried one of the region's most famous dishes: Boston Baked Beans. However, the signature ingredient that makes Boston Baked Beans so special is also what makes it so dangerous to cook them in the traditional way.
Native Americans are credited with teaching settlers how to slow-cook beans with maple syrup, which is thought to be how Boston Baked Beans got their start. The meal is currently prepared with molasses, which gives the beans their distinctive flavor, but also causes a long boiling time because the sugar and calcium in molasses cause the beans to stay firm for longer.
Molasses allows the beans to roast for a very long time and create rich aromas without turning into a paste, but roasting beans in an oven for 13 hours increases the risk of fire and carbon monoxide poisoning, especially if unattended. Martha Stewart suggests a six-hour bake as an option, or you may try using a slow cooker in place of an oven.