33 responses

  1. Serena
    June 14, 2012

    I love, love this post. So much info! I do TRY to soak my own beans more often using the quick soak method. But it seems once I cook them, they are just never soft enough to my liking. Maybe they never get that way unless they are canned…and the heat processing softens them. But I do find cooking then freezing helps soften them some…and is practical, because once I get around to cooking them, I cook more than I need. Any tips on getting them soft?

    Reply

    • The Spicy RD
      June 14, 2012

      So glad you liked the post Serena! Wish I had some tips for getting the beans softer and to your liking…Have you ever tried the pressure cooker method? I haven’t tried this yet, but apparently this is very common in Mexico, where beans are typically not soaked, but usually cooked in a pressure cooker. May be worth a try….If you give if a go, let me know how it works!

      Reply

    • Nicole @WholeHealthRD
      June 15, 2012

      Maybe your water is hard serena. I’m on a phone or else I’d include a link!

      Reply

  2. Sanjeeta kk
    June 14, 2012

    Very informative post, EA…I soak my beans (harder varieties) overnight and pressure cook for 8-10 whistles. And then use them for my cooking…most of the times my beans come out soft and mushy. Beautiful clicks.

    Reply

    • EA-The spicy rd
      June 15, 2012

      Love that you have a system that includes waiting 8-10 whistles Sanjeeta :-). I’m wondering though if the overnight soak plus the presssure cook, THEN the cooking is causing them to come out mushy….So interesting to learn about everyone’s bean soaking/cooking methods!

      Reply

  3. Lauren Slayton
    June 15, 2012

    Bravo, so proud of you. I adore Rancho Gordo too (we may have been separated at birth), try their popcorn, amazing. So, despite being late you get an A because you threw in the nice Q and A and your photos, as always, are beyond. However, I should note that if I wasn’t so nice I could also say, first you’re late with your work and then you cheat? Hmn, what kind of things are you teaching those tooting kids?

    Reply

    • EA-The spicy rd
      June 15, 2012

      Thanks for the A professor :-). I promise to try and be a model citizen for my children when they are home from school this summer! I saw that popcorn too on Rancho Gordo’s website, plus all their other varieties of beans have made me a new fan too!

      Reply

  4. Gina (The Candid RD)
    June 15, 2012

    I don’t eat a lot of beans, but I do buy them often for Nick (the reason I don’t eat them is because of the GAS! I have to take about 3 Beano for every half cup, that’s expensive!).
    I honestly have never soaked my beans, but…I should one day, just to see the taste difference. Thanks for the tutorial. Enjoy your weekend!

    Reply

    • EA-The spicy rd
      June 15, 2012

      Thanks for sharing Gina :-). I have seen you recommend beano before on your blog, but I can definitely imagine it getting expensive if you have to take 3 per every half cup of beans! Let me know if you try the soak method and discard the liquid, which may help, at least a little, with the “gas” problem.

      Reply

  5. Kristen (swanky dietitian)
    June 15, 2012

    What a great post!!!
    My boy has been the one actually that has had me soak beans. I hate to say I usually use cans. But this post has definitely inspired me!!!
    Have a fabulous weekend! 🙂

    Reply

    • EA-The Spicy RD
      June 16, 2012

      Yay! So glad I’ve inspired you to get soaking Kristen 🙂

      Reply

  6. Marisa Voorhees, The Food-Sensitive Foodie
    June 15, 2012

    EA – adorable! Your post is such a riot and the pics are just gorgeous! One of my kitchen teachers was my Mexican grandmother so I grew up with beans soaking and cooking each weekend. I aspire to do it often on my own except… half the time then sit in the pot too long, ferment, and then have to be tossed. Or they sit dry in the pantry forever (along with those cans of sardines). And, soaking beans for 1 is my biggest challenge. While healthy, best in moderation (like everything!) You’ve certainly inspired me to soak again!

    Reply

    • EA-The Spicy RD
      June 16, 2012

      Thanks so much Marisa 🙂 LOL about those sardines! WIsh your grandma could come over to my house and cook with me!

      Reply

  7. Nicole @WholeHealthRD
    June 15, 2012

    Great post. I love rancho gordo, I bought a lot when I was doing my bean project last year. I found soaking over night and the next day while I was work was perfect. My beans never took more than 1-1.5 hours to cook. My husband hated my bean project though. I thought his gut would get used to it, but it never did!

    Reply

    • EA-The Spicy RD
      June 16, 2012

      Thanks Nicole! I’m so curious about your bean project…I’d love to try soaking overnight for comparison, but not sure if I’ll plan my bean soaking that far in advance. Sorry to hear your hubby and beans don’t mix!

      Reply

  8. Alison @ Ingredients, Inc.
    June 15, 2012

    great post! I must go there sometime! Hope you’re well!!

    Reply

    • EA-The Spicy RD
      June 16, 2012

      Thanks Alison! Hope you’re doing well too 🙂

      Reply

  9. Kiersten @ Oh My Veggies
    June 15, 2012

    The bean photos are gorgeous–who knew beans could be so beautiful?! And it’s funny, because I discovered Rancho Gordo beans yesterday! I didn’t buy the beans this time, but I did buy a bag of their chia seeds. 🙂

    Reply

    • EA-The Spicy RD
      June 16, 2012

      Thanks so much Kiersten 🙂 Isn’t Rancho Gordo a fabulous discovery??? Can’t wait to try all their other yummy stuff!

      Reply

  10. Vanessa @Vanperrone
    June 15, 2012

    Love beans and love your post! I prefer using dried beans over canned just because they taste so much better. In august, we usually get large bags of fresh cranberry beans, shuck them and freeze them for the year. It’s a real treat!

    Reply

    • EA-The Spicy RD
      June 16, 2012

      Thank you Vanessa:-) I had read about freezing beans somewhere else-definitely need to give this a try as well!

      Reply

  11. amy @ fearless homemaker
    June 16, 2012

    ha! i was wondering if your post title was a coincidence or an intentional pun. =) i need to experiment more with dried beans – i cook with canned beans quite a bit, but they can be mushy + I don’t like all the chemicals that can be in there. these tips are great!

    Reply

    • The Spicy RD
      June 18, 2012

      Glad you like my humor Amy 🙂 Hope you give bean soaking a try!

      Reply

  12. TastefullyJulie
    June 16, 2012

    I love the looks of those heirloom beans. I must try them now. The last beans I soaked were butter beans an it was a total disaster. All the skins separated and everything turned to mush when I cooked it. I guess I should have make a dip or something but I was mad so I threw them away!

    Reply

    • The Spicy RD
      June 18, 2012

      Hmmm…I’ve never tried butter beans before. I’m having memories of a B-52’s song about beans now…was it butter beans, or am I making this up???

      Reply

  13. teri@managedmacros
    June 17, 2012

    You sure DID do your homework!!! I am a bad dietitian. I rarely soak my beans and buy the canned. 🙁 I love beans though…you are right, you really cannot top their nutrition facts!!! I love a good bean burger. Hummus is always in my fridge. Beans and rice is made often. I put them in anything I can…by teenage will actually eat them so this is a plus for me!
    Your heirloom beans sound like a real treasure!! Great shots Spicy…I always love your eye!!

    Reply

    • The Spicy RD
      June 18, 2012

      I think you’re a good dietitian Teri even if you don’t soak your beans 🙂 Great your teenager likes beans-my kids like ’em too-definite plus!

      Reply

  14. rebecca
    June 18, 2012

    we use dried beans all the time I have an Indian hubby though he grew up eating them

    Reply

    • The Spicy RD
      June 18, 2012

      I bet you have some really yummy Indian recipes with beans and lentils Rebecca 🙂

      Reply

  15. Terra
    June 22, 2012

    I love how kale and banana paired is so delicious together:-) This looks beautiful! Hugs, Terra

    Reply

  16. janet @ the taste space
    July 4, 2012

    I am a bit late with my suggestions, but I love beans! Soups, salads, stir-fries, sauces, you name it! Even dessert (I have a really great chocolate black bean cookie recipe – you would have no clue there are black beans in it!) I recently discovered Rancho Gordo as well and have had great results with his beans… nothing beats fresh beans, cooked from scratch. 🙂

    Reply

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