Put the dried beans in a large bowl and cover with cold water. Soak the beans overnight in the refrigerator.
Drain the soaked beans, place them in a large pot and cover with fresh cold water. Put the beans over medium-high heat and bring to a boil. Toss in the bay leaves and garlic. Reduce the heat to medium and simmer for 11/2 hours until tender. Drain the cooked beans and spread them out on a sheet pan to cool slightly.
Put about 1/2 cup of flour in a shallow platter and season it with salt and pepper; mix with a fork to distribute evenly. Toss the beans in the seasoned flour to coat completely.
Place a large skillet over medium-high heat and coat with the oil. When the oil is hot, add the pancetta, fry for a couple of minutes to crisp it up. Toss in the sage leaves and fry for about 1 minute. Remove the pancetta and sage to some paper towels; now you have a flavor base. Shake off excess flour from the beans and put them in the pan in a single layer. Fry the beans for a good 10 minutes to form a golden crust on the outside of the beans, tossing to cook both sides.
Return the pancetta and fried sage to the pan, stir everything together, and serve.
Recipe courtesy of Tyler Florence