or Connect
TheCatSite.com › Forums › General Forums › The Cat Lounge › Best way to cook dried beans!
New Posts  All Forums:Forum Nav:

Best way to cook dried beans!

post #1 of 7
Thread Starter 

There are a lot of good cooks here, some of you might have heard about this but it was new to me (I didn't actually believe it until I tried it). Dried beans have always been a staple for me, they are cheap, tasty, nutritious, versatile, what could be better?

But I've always had to cook them for HOURS, and remember to soak them the night before, and it seems they often ended up being mush, which was disappointing when you are making one of those nice 8-bean soups and you want to see the different beans when you are eating it.

 

Here's all you do: Don't soak the beans, just rinse them and take out any rocks/dirt. Add cool water at least an inch over the beans, add salt, and simmer on the stovetop for 15 minutes. Transfer the pot to the oven and cook on 325F for 75 minutes. Depending how much water you added, you might want to check it halfway through.

 

That's it! Each bean will be tender and holding its shape. I think the process is similar to using a pressure cooker. When I tried this, I threw in some caramelized onions, chopped carrots and celery, and a ham hock at the beginning, it was delicious.

 

 

post #2 of 7

That's interesting.  I've never had any success with beans except when using a clay cooker (bean pot).  Thank you for sharing.  I am going to try this!  But it's too late for this weekend; my beans are already soaking.  laughing02.gif

post #3 of 7
As a vegetarian, I cook beans often. I do soak them overnight, but cooking them does not take hours, and they don't turn to mush. Maybe adding salt too soon was the problem. You can't add salt until the beans are cooked soft. The salt prevents them from softening.


Robin
post #4 of 7
Quote:
Originally Posted by bastetservant View Post

As a vegetarian, I cook beans often. I do soak them overnight, but cooking them does not take hours, and they don't turn to mush. Maybe adding salt too soon was the problem. You can't add salt until the beans are cooked soft. The salt prevents them from softening.
Robin



As do tomato products. I don't soak beans overnight anymore. I rinse and sort, throw them into the pot, cover them with 1-1/2 inches of water, bring them to a boil, and immediately turn off the burner and pop a lid onto the pot. Let them sit for an hour or so and they're nice and puffy. Then I bring them to a boil again, and cook until soft, usually about an hour or so. For older beans, it can take 3-4 hours to cook. I don't add salt or tomato products (ketchup, salsa, etc.) until they've gotten soft. Like salt, tomatoes tend to stop the softening process. I don't know why.

 

One of my baked bean recipes starts with 2 pounds of great northern flat beans. And after the soaking process, the beans have to cook at 325 degrees in the oven for 3 hours (once the bacon, salt, tomatoes, etc. have been added).

 

Thanks for the tip, SwampWitch. I have some interesting bean recipes for the pressure cooker, but haven't tried them yet.

 

post #5 of 7

Swampwitch, forgot to ask...do you use a lid during the cooking process? 

post #6 of 7
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by nurseangel View Post

Swampwitch, forgot to ask...do you use a lid during the cooking process? 



Sorry, YES you need a lid on the pot in the oven, also while they are simmering for the first 15 minutes, so the lid and pot both need to be oven-safe.

 

I think the salt issue is a myth, although I followed that "rule" for decades, I've found it really makes no difference.  I've made beans in salted broth or with salted pork (very salty, no need to add any) and the salt did not keep them from becoming tender. It's the old dried beans (like Winchester said) that are the problem; those take forever to cook and end up mushy.

 

I couldn't believe this method, though, we can have cooked beans or bean soup in one and a half hours now, no need to plan a day in advance. Each bean was tender and whole, and the ham hocks added a wonderful salty smoky flavor.

post #7 of 7

Thanks!  smile.gif

New Posts  All Forums:Forum Nav:
  Return Home
  Back to Forum: The Cat Lounge
TheCatSite.com › Forums › General Forums › The Cat Lounge › Best way to cook dried beans!