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May 2021

Strategies for Success Newsletter May 2021 Issue 185

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Published by Emily Huling Selling Strategies
www.sellingstrategies.com
Copyright 2021 Emily Huling. All rights reserved.

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In this May 2021 issue:

  1. Thoughts from the Road
  2. Thoughts from the Office
  3. Josmo’s Cafe
  4. Stay Energized

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  1. Thoughts from the Road

Here today, gone tomorrow

“I’ll do it tomorrow.”

Fully vaccinated and so ready for a vacation, John and I were thrilled we were able to safely attend a close friend’s outdoor wedding in Phoenix in late March. We rented a house and stayed through early April. Although we were sorry to miss our North Carolina early-blooming azaleas, camellias, and dogwoods, we were excited to see the desert in full bloom. We visited the Desert Botanical Garden, Boyce Thompson Arboretum and hiked in several beautiful state parks. However, my favorite walk was each morning at daybreak when I walked the neighborhood streets. Each day I could watch the progress of the blooms on different cactuses. It was spectacular.

One day, seemingly out of nowhere, there were these amazing huge blossoms on a gorgeous cactus. I didn’t have my phone with me to take a picture. No problem, I thought, I’ll take the picture tomorrow.

It didn’t happen. It couldn’t happen. The next day when I returned with my camera in hand, the blooms were gone! GONE! Those gorgeous blooms were on the Argentine cactus which have a 24-hour life. Here’s a short time-lapse video of the flower blooming and other pictures of this magnificent cactus.

Moral of the story. We all put things off believing we can do it later. Taking a picture. Telling someone you love them. Keeping a promise. The Argentine cactus provided me a needed reminder that postponing an action can result in unforeseen consequences.

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  1. Thoughts from the Office

Planning a new start

My tried-and-true iPhone 6s wouldn’t hold a battery charge for more than a couple of hours, so I had to bite the bullet and get a new phone. I’ve upgraded before, so I knew that the technology used to transfer data, apps, folders, notes, really everything from an old phone to new phone is reliable and I use iCloud backup.

The technician who transferred my data asked me numerous times to confirm that all my data had loaded onto the new phone. I checked, double checked, and authorized him to wipe the old phone clean. When I got home, I noticed a notes folder where I keep random information wasn’t on the phone or in the iCloud back-up. Oh no! Missing were dozens of notes for future Energizer Minutes and newsletters, recommendations from friends for books, movies, and shows, travel ideas and information, and assorted other items.

I was surprised at my reaction to have years’ worth of notes disappear. Not only didn’t I panic, my mind quickly shifted to thinking how nice it would be to have a clean slate. When someone followed up as to whether I had read a book, watched a movie, or gotten to a restaurant, I’d shrug and tell them it was lost in iPhone land. It was freeing!

Then my IT expert husband asked if he could try and find the folders on my phone. “Of course,” I said, knowing he’d be unsuccessful since he’s totally a Samsung guy. Ten minutes later John shouts, “Found them!” They were there all the time of course, just not immediately visible.

“Thanks, sweetheart,” I said reluctantly, once again burdened with all those notes.

Oh well. New start next time!

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  1. Josmo’s Café

Dalgona Whipped Coffee is my new sinful treat. Whether you enjoy it with hot milk or cold milk, it is a coffee milk shake. I doubled the recipe, poured it over a cup of warm milk in a tall glass, and drank it with a straw. Yum!

In honor of Cinco de Mayo, it’s time to drink that half a bottle of pre-mixed Margarita that’s been in the refrigerator way too long! While imbibing, we will make one of our two favorite and easy Mexican dinners. Oven-baked Chicken Fajitas and Zesty Salsa Chicken.

Looking for more great recipes? We have over 100 recipes on our Josmo’s Café page on the website.

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  1. Stay Energized

Our Energizer Minute for May is called Change the Setting.

Who knew wedding crashers are a real thing? We visited with the bride and groom after their wedding. Thank goodness they had the foresight to hire security (think men in black) for their private-venue wedding. Six univited people attempted entrance to the wedding! John and I googled to learn more about wedding crashers. There are very funny published rules and hilarious stories. Here are some first-hand wedding crasher stories I thought you’d enjoy.

Follow me on Twitter @EmilyHuling to read my Energizer Moments.

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Please share any of my free stuff, articles, or newsletter content when proper credit is included.

Selling Strategies: Strategies for Success Newsletter is published by Emily Huling Selling Strategies. For further information, contact emily@sellingstrategies.com.

© 2021 Emily Huling Selling Strategies All rights reserved.

December 2020

Strategies for Success Newsletter December 2020 Issue 180

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Published by Emily Huling Selling Strategies
www.sellingstrategies.com
Copyright 2020 Emily Huling. All rights reserved.

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In this December 2020 issue:

  1. Thoughts from Home
  2. Thoughts from the Office
  3. Josmo’s Cafe
  4. Stay Energized
  5. Emily Live

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  1. Thoughts from Home

Finishing touches

Bob, owner of Stumpy’s Tree Service, has been taking care of our wooded property for 25 years. Large jobs and small jobs, Bob is expert in what he does. Bob is reliable. He shows up on time to do a job estimate and on schedule when it’s time to begin the work. His pricing is more than fair even during storm damage times when others charge more. There are probably other tree services in the area who can boast the same. However, I’ve never found a reason to give them a try. Why? Bob sets himself apart with his finishing touches.

Bob is diligent about double checking the quality of the completed work. If he notices something else that needs to be addressed, he lets us know and gives us an estimate.  Bob and his crew do an excellent job removing tree debris and cleaning up the area where the work is done. Then they go the extra mile and clean up a bit beyond. When leaving us, Bob tells us how much he appreciates our business.

After every job, Bob sends a hand-written thank you note with his business card enclosed. He personalizes the card by signing Bob and Nicole, his wife. That tiny personal touch has helped build our relationship when I often ask about Nicole and the rest of his family.

Finishing touches. It’s what people remember. Finishing touches build trust and strong relationships. It’s what makes your customers not look anywhere else for the services you provide.

What finishing touches are you using with your clients?

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  1. Thoughts from the Office

How to build rapport while wearing a mask

The September issue of Harvard Business Review had an article by Dustin York containing the best advice I’ve read about conducting effective business while wearing a mask. One of the tips is to practice your mask voice. Using the acronym PAVE, York identifies four key elements: Pause, Accentuate, Volume, and Emotion. Here’s the link to the whole article.

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Our November newsletter featured a story about a client from 2001 who reconnected with me about my book Selling in a Hard Market. We received many orders. Thank you!

If you are interested in having your agents, underwriters, or marketing teams learn and apply the book’s 27 tips, please visit our product information page for a list of the tips and how to order books for your team.

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  1. Josmo’s Café

Holiday baking is big in the Josmo’s Café kitchen. John is the baker for his mother’s Rum Cake recipe. It is the best of all the rum cakes we’ve tried. Eggnog Cookies are now a tradition for holiday baking thanks to a client of mine who shared her family recipe with me a few years ago. An added bonus – house smells heavenly while baking!

Gifts from your kitchen are always popular. I continue to make my most popular Strawberry Bread and Zucchini Bread for gift giving. Both recipes are listed in the Josmo’s Café Sweet Treats section.

We have over 100 recipes on our Josmo’s Café page on the website. Many great dishes and sweets to make and enjoy!

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  1. Stay Energized

Please visit our Energizer Minute archives page to enjoy a past podcast this month. New Energizer Minutes will resume in January.

Andrea Bocelli’s new album Believe was released in November. He and Alison Krause sing a beautiful rendition of Amazing Grace. Ed Sheeran fans will enjoy his 2017 duet with this incredible Italian tenor singing Sheeran’s emotionally-packed song Perfect (Dancing in the Dark).

Follow me on Twitter @EmilyHuling to read my Energizer Moments.

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  1. Emily Live update

John and I are still at home following recommended precautions to stay healthy. As one of my sensible clients said to me, “We are canceling all of our gatherings this holiday season to be sure we are all able to be together next year.”

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Please share any of my free stuff, articles, or newsletter content when proper credit is included.

Selling Strategies: Strategies for Success Newsletter is published by Emily Huling Selling Strategies. For further information, contact emily@sellingstrategies.com.

© 2020 Emily Huling Selling Strategies All rights reserved.

One-Pan Moroccan Spiced Chicken

One-Pan Moroccan Spiced Chicken

This dish has everything we like including easy-to-assemble and quick clean up! We served it for a dinner party and everyone wanted the recipe. That’s success!

1½ pounds carrots, peeled if you like
1 large onion, halved and sliced
¾ cup pitted green olives
1 tablespoon ground cumin
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
½ teaspoon ground turmeric
Salt and pepper
8 bone-in, skin-on chicken thighs (about 1½ pounds)
2 lemons, halved
¼ cup chopped fresh cilantro, for garnish

Instructions: Heat the oven to 425 degrees and position a rack near the top. Cut the carrots diagonally into 1-inch pieces. Put them in a 9-by-12-inch baking pan and scatter the onion and olives on top.

Combine the cumin, cinnamon and turmeric in a small bowl with a generous sprinkle of salt and pepper; toss to combine. Sprinkle half the spice mixture over the vegetables. Put the chicken on top of the vegetables and rub all over with the remaining spices; turn them skin side up. Tuck the lemons here and there. Pour 3 cups water into the pan.

Transfer the pan to the oven and bake until the chicken skin is browned and crisp and the meat is no longer pink at the bone, 30-40 minutes. Garnish with the cilantro and serve hot directly from the pan with a big spoon to get all the juices.

Makes 4 servings

From “Dinner for Everyone” by Mark Bittman

 

Sweet Potato Salad

 Sweet Potato Salad

This fragrant, flavorful, and colorful side dish is a perfect choice to accompany grilled chicken, beef, or fish. My sister-in-law made this recipe for us and we loved it. The recipe was created by Chef Michael Twitty, a culinary historian and food writer who prepares, preserves, and promotes African foodways and traditions.

Potato Salad

Roast at 425 degrees for 20-30 minutes until tender:

2 cups bite-size pieces of butternut squash
1 ½ cups bite-size pieces of sweet potatoes

After roasting, put in a bowl and add ¼ cup of halved mixed olives.

Pour the dressing over the mixture and gently mix. Let it rest at room temperature about 30 minutes before serving.

Dressing

Mix together these spices:

½ tsp kosher salt
1 tsp black pepper
½ tsp turmeric
½ tsp cumin
½ tsp cinnamon
½ tsp ginger
¼ tsp ground cloves
½ tsp ground red pepper

Whisk together and then add the spices:

5 T extra virgin olive oil
2 T fresh lemon juice
1 tsp chopped preserved lemon (substitute grated lemon peel)
3 tsp honey

Serves 4-6.

Instant Pot Chicken Piccata

Instant Pot Chicken Piccata is an easy and quick recipe in the one-pot cooker. Chicken breasts are coated in parmesan and pressure cooked in lemon butter sauce. Delicious!

Ingredients

2 large chicken breasts, skinless and boneless

1 tsp salt

½ tsp black pepper

¼ cup flour

¼ cup finely grated parmesan cheese

3 T olive oil

3 T unsalted butter

1½ cup chicken stock

¼ cup capers

¼ cup fresh lemon juice

3 T cornstarch

2 T fresh parsley

Instructions

  1. Butterfly the chicken breasts and cut them in half. Pound them with a meat tenderizer or a rolling pin. Season them on both sides with salt and pepper.
  2. In a wide plate/bowl combine the flour and parmesan. Now dredge each chicken piece in flour mixture.
  3. When done, turn on the sauté function on your Instant Pot and add the oil. When hot, place the chicken breasts in and brown on each side. When ready, take them out and deglaze the pot with chicken stock. Add butter, chicken breasts, capers and freshly squeezed lemon juice.
  4. Lock the lid and pressure cook on manual for 4 minutes. Wait until the pressure is released naturally (this will take about 4 minutes in this case).
  5. Remove the lid and take out the chicken pieces. Turn on the sauté function and thicken the sauce with cornstarch that has been dissolved in little water plus a bit of the piccata sauce (Add 2-3 tablespoons of the sauce into the cornstarch mixture first, stir it and only then pour the mixture into the Instant Pot.) Let it cook for 1-2 minutes to thicken before turning off the pot.
  6. Finally, add chopped parsley and the chicken pieces.
  7. Serve with a side of your choice.

Recipe Notes

  1. This recipe was developed for a 6-quart/6-liter Instant Pot electric pressure cooker.
  2. The cooking time does not include time needed for the pot to come to pressure and time needed to release the pressure. Add extra 8 minutes in this case.
  3. Tenderizing– place the chicken pieces between 2 sheets of baking parchment or plastic wrap before you start pounding them with a rolling pin/meat tenderizer.
  4. Browning– the Instant Pot is not wide enough to hold all the chicken pieces so you will have to do it in 2 batches.
  5. Deglazing– adding the chicken stock to the hot pot will remove all the pieces that are stuck to the bottom of your pot so they will become part of the sauce. Some might not go easily so use a wooden spoon to scrape them off.
  6. The amount of capers/lemon juice/corn starch can be adjusted to your liking.
  7. Sides– rice, orzo, couscous or pasta are some great options.
  8. Serves 4.

Adapted from happyfoodtubes.com

 

February 2019

Strategies for Success Newsletter February 2019 Issue 158

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Published by Emily Huling Selling Strategies
www.sellingstrategies.com
Copyright 2019 Emily Huling. All rights reserved.

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In this February 2019 issue:

  1. Thoughts from Home
  2. Thoughts from the Office
  3. Josmo’s Cafe
  4. Stay Energized
  5. Emily Live

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Just released! 17 Terrific Tips for New Employee Development Employers want new employees to be prepared, focused, and eager to get started. It’s only fair that new employees receive the same consideration from their employer. These ideas will confirm and add to what you are doing to assure new hires are engaged and positioned for long-term success.

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  1. Thoughts from Home

It may be none of my business….

A week after sending a friend’s eight-year old daughter, Ella, a birthday card with a ten-dollar bill in it, I received a thank-you note in the mail. The envelope was addressed by her mother and Ella had handwritten the note. As Aunt Emily to many, I have received lots of thank you notes from eight-year olds.

Ella’s note alarmed me. Not what she wrote, but how it was written. Her handwriting and spelling were not up to the standards of children her age. I wondered if I should say something to her mother. Was this any of my business? I know that some schools don’t teach cursive writing anymore. What could be the fallout to the friendship?

I asked a close friend who has raised two amazing daughters for advice. Susan confirmed what my gut told me. I needed to say something to Ella’s mother. Better yet, Susan gave me advice on how to convey my concern.

I phoned Ella’s mother and told her how thrilled I was to receive a real thank-you note. I mentioned that I noticed Ella’s penmanship and spelling were not what I’ve seen for children her age. Then I said, “I’m curious. Has Ella ever been tested by the school?” Ella’s mom was very gracious. She told me that she hadn’t looked at Ella’s note when she put it in the envelope and Ella had not been tested as far as she knew. She thanked me and said she was on it!

Several months later I received another note in the mail from Ella. What a change! The note was perfect. Ella told me in the note she had been working on improving her handwriting and wanted to show me!

Moral of the story. Sometimes it pays to take a risk and get involved. It’s up to each of us to weigh the pros and cons and choose wisely.

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  1. Thoughts from the Office

Imagining the worst

I found an ant crawling across my desk one cold January morning. Unusual I thought. I don’t eat in my office so there is nothing that should attract an ant other than wanting to get in from the cold. Smart ant. I wondered, could there be other ants who follow his lead? Because of this thinking, I imagined that I felt an ant or two crawling up my leg. When I checked, nothing was there.

That got me thinking. Once our minds are triggered by something, our imagination can run wild. This applies to business dealings, relationships, service expectations, nasty drivers, and more.

Moral of the story. Avoid letting your imagination make a single occurrence worse than it is.

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  1. Josmo’s Café

Lemon lovers, do I have a cake for you! I wanted to use the rest of a big bag of lemons, buttermilk, and sour cream that I had on hand. In my search I discovered a new recipe blogger Averie Sunshine. Her Lemon Buttermilk Cake with Lemon Glaze is delicious and easy. Enjoy!

Check out other Josmo’s Cafe recipes on our website.

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  1. Stay Energized

Take a break – Yoga Dog is a two-minute YouTube video that is sure to bring a smile to your face whether you practice yoga or not.

Our Energizer Minute podcast for this month of Valentine’s Day is Melt into the moment.

Follow me on Twitter @EmilyHuling to read my weekday Energizer Moments.

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  1. Emily Live
  • Private Client – Phoenix, AZ – February 11-15, 2019
  • WSIA Underwriting Summit – National Harbor, MD – February 24-27, 2019
  • Agency Management CIC – Louisville, KY – March 6, 2019
  • NAMIC Personal Lines Seminar – Chicago, IL – Connecting with Your Agents – April 16, 2019
  • Private Client – Minneapolis, MN – SOAR for the Future – May 6-8, 2019
  • Private Client – Fargo, ND – SOAR for the Future – May 9, 2019
  • Agency Management CIC – Meriden, CT – June 26, 2019

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Please share any of my free stuff, articles, or newsletter content when proper credit is included.

Selling Strategies: Strategies for Success Newsletter is published by Emily Huling Selling Strategies. For further information, contact emily@sellingstrategies.com.

© 2019 Emily Huling Selling Strategies All rights reserved.

April 2017

Strategies for Success Newsletter April 2017 Issue 136

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Published by Emily Huling Selling Strategies

www.sellingstrategies.com

Copyright 2017 Emily Huling. All rights reserved.

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In this April 2017 issue:

  1. Thoughts from the Office
  2. Thoughts to Ponder
  3. Josmo’s Cafe
  4. Stay Energized
  5. Emily Live

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  1. Thoughts from the Office

Leaking information.

No, this story isn’t about WikiLeaks or unnamed sources. It’s about providing great customer service.

Valvoline Instant Oil Change in Mooresville, NC has been servicing my cars for oil changes and inspections for over 15 years. The service is fast, the waiting area is clean (not that I wait long), and their service team is friendly. I took my car in last week for the annual state inspection. When I paid the bill, the service man said, “By the way, we noticed there is an oil leak. If you haven’t had it checked out, we suggest you do.”  I wasn’t aware of an oil leak and thanked him for mentioning it. I’ve since taken the car to our mechanic and the problem has been fixed.

What a customer-focused thing to do when servicing an account! Pay attention to what’s not right, needs attention, or mention something new the customer would benefit from. Begin with saying “By the way.”  It’s non-threatening. It’s simply having your customer’s best interest in mind.

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  1. Thoughts to Ponder

Turning age 21, Kevin was excited he could legally drink. He decided to conduct an experiment to identify what would be his preferred stiff drink.

He bought bottles of whiskey, scotch, and rye. The first night he drank whiskey and water. The next morning, he woke with a smashing headache. The second night he drank scotch and water. The next morning, he woke with a smashing headache. The third night he drank rye and water. The next morning, he woke with a smashing headache.

He really liked all the liquor – the whiskey, the scotch, and the rye. The revelation? No matter which liquor he chose, one thing was obvious. To avoid a hangover, he shouldn’t mix any of them with water.

Moral of the story: It can be dangerous to jump to conclusions without digging into facts.

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  1. Josmo’s Cafe

Blintz Soufflé is our recipe of the month. It’s a perfect springtime light-and-creamy brunch dish that goes well with fresh fruit and coffee cake. Enjoy!

Please visit our Josmo’s Cafe recipes list to find a wide variety of our favorite recipes. All dishes have been taste tested many, many times!

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2017 Event Speaking News

Agency Nation’s Ryan Hanley interviewed me about my presentation Leading with Certainty at Elevate 2017. Please enjoy the podcast!

Looking for hot topics for your client, member, or employee meetings? Our most requested presentations are listed on our 2017 speaking topics web page.

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  1. Stay Energized

Managers tell me they find lots of helpful ideas in our column 17 Terrific Management Tips. Visit the Business Building page on our website to read all eleven 17 Terrific Tips columns.

April Energizer Minute – Second Choice May Just be BetterGet supercharged with Energizer Minutes – one-to-two-minute audio stories told by yours truly to energize, invigorate, and inspire!

Follow me on Twitter @EmilyHuling to read my weekday Energizer Moments.

John has a new remote-controlled model boat! Combining talent, skill, and the patience of a saint, John has created another amazing model boat.  To view John’s slideshow of the building his PT 109 and video of him running it, click on these links Building the 109 and The PT109 in action.

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  1. Emily Live
  • Agency Management CIC – Austin, TX – April 5-6, 2017
  • Private Client – Parsippany, NJ – April 11-13, 2017
  • AAMGA Annual Conference – Orlando, FL – May 21-23, 2017
  • Elevate 2017 – Agency Nation event – Leading with Certainty – Milwaukee, WI – June 4-6, 2017
  • Agency Management CIC – Knoxville, TN – August 16-18, 2017
  • NAPSLO Annual Conference – San Diego – September 10-13, 2017
  • Private Client – Fargo, ND – Working Together for Success – October 2-5, 2017

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Share any of my free stuff, articles, or newsletter content as long as proper credit is included.

Selling Strategies: Strategies for Success Newsletter is published by Emily Huling Selling Strategies. For further information, contact emily@sellingstrategies.com.

© 2017 Emily Huling. All rights reserved.

Four Bean Baked Beans

Summer picnics need awesome baked beans! This yummy, old-fashioned baked bean casserole is from a 1975 Minnesota church cookbook. It proves our mothers and grandmothers knew what was good!

 

1 can kidney beans, drain only half the liquid

1 can lima beans, drained only half the liquid

1 can butter beans, drain only half the liquid

1 can pork & beans with molasses, do not drain

 

Mix beans together in an oven-proof casserole.

Make sauce:

Brown ½ pound chopped bacon with 2 large onions. Add garlic salt, ½ teaspoon dry mustard, ½ cup catsup, and ¾ cup brown sugar. Simmer for 10-20 minutes. Add to beans and mix well.

Bake 1 hour at 350 degrees.