How To Cook Dried Beans

Mixed Legumes on paper and burlap - How To Cook Dried BeansSoaking dried beans or legumes in water first, helps with dissolving the raffinose sugars that can cause discomfort in the digestive system. Rinsing the beans after soaking and draining any water after cooking will further help to reduce the sugars as well.

soaking deied beans - How To Cook Dried Beans

Image credit: EHow

Here are some steps you can take to reducing the raffinose sugars, a complex carbohydrate found in most in most dried beans.

This type of sugar is also found in cabbage, Brussels sprouts, broccoli, and asparagus, among other vegetables, and including whole grains.

The California Dry Bean Advisory Board recommend this method for gas-free beans.

  • Place 1 pound of beans in 10 cups of boiling water for 2-3 minutes
  • Remove from heat, cover and set aside overnight

 

Soaking the beans overnight helps to remove or dissolve between 75 to 90 percent of the indigestible raffinose sugars.

If you want, you can add 1/8 teaspoon of baking soda to the soaking water to help remove the raffinose sugars as well.

Prosciutto Cotto and Lentils

Prosciutto Cotto and Lentils

Delicious Living recommends soaking 1 cup of beans in 3 cups of water for 6 hours before cooking them.

After soaking the beans, drain them of the water, then rinse thoroughly. Now your beans are ready to be cooked.

When cooking the beans, you can add any herbs and spices, but do not add any salt or acidic ingredients, like vinegar, tomatoes or juice, which can considerably slow the cooking time. Add these ingredients when the beans are done cooking.

When cooking your beans you can use either water, or a stalk made from vegetables, beef or chicken.

Cooking times will vary depending on the type of beans you will be using. Most cooks will tell you that dried lentils or split peas do not require soaking, but they do require sorting and rinsing.

Keep in mind that cooking lentils in too much liquid, or over cooking them, will make them mushy. They should only be cooked for 20 minutes or until tender.

How to Use Cooked Beans

Moroccan Three Bean and Kale Soup

Moroccan Three Bean and Kale Soup

Dried beans when cooked are very versatile, and although they have different flavors and textures, they can often be used interchangeably in recipes.

Cooked beans can be used to make soups, added as a topping to vegetable salads, add to cooked rice, couscous or pasta salads for texture.

Here are some of our featured recipes using cooked beans.

Garlic Lime Chicken Fajitas

Garlic Lime Chicken Fajitas – Featuring a side dish of quinoa with black beans, onion, corn, and chili pepper

Spicy Chorizo and Bean Soup

Prosciutto Cotto and Lentils

South Of The Border Chicken Tortilla Soup

Gluten Free BBQ Chicken Lasagna

Moroccan Three Bean and Kale Soup

Garlic Lime Chicken Fajitas

What Others Are Reading:

Creamy Chicken Florentine

Creamy Chicken Florentine

I found this recipe on the side of a tub of garlic Philly cooking cream. But I didn’t use the Philadelphia product, because of the added artificial flavors and chemicals. I make my own garlic cream as well as added the other ingredients the recipe called for.

The recipe calls for pine nuts, and pine nuts provide a good amount of both vitamins E and K. These vitamins have a beneficial effect on the cardiovascular system. Vitamin-K helps form blood clots to prevent bleeding after injury, and vitamin-E helps with producing red blood cells essential for moving oxygen throughout the body.

These small nuts also have the trace minerals manganese, zinc, iron, and magnesium. Wow, a lot of nutrition for such a small nut.

Here is what you will need for the featured recipe – Creamy Chicken Florentine -.

First prepare the garlic cream sauce.

Garlic Cream Sauce

2 tablespoons butter, no salt

8 garlic cloves, minced

1 (14 ounce) can organic chicken broth, no salt

2 cups whipping cream

Salt and pepper to taste

1 tablespoon arrow-root starch

1/4 cup cold water

In a large saucepan, melt butter, add garlic and cook for 30 seconds.

Add chicken broth and bring to a boil.

Add whipping cream and salt and return to a boil, stirring frequently.

Mix water and cornstarch and add to sauce. Reduce heat and simmer until the sauce is thick enough to coat the back of a spoon.

After the sauce is made, set aside.

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Next you will need:

1 lb. Chicken breast cut into bit size pieces

1 cup red bell pepper, diced

6 oz. package baby spinach

1 cup garlic cream sauce

2 cups Penne pasta

2 tbsp. pine nuts

Cook Penne pasta; according to package instructions.

In a heated skillet with 2 tbs. of olive oil add chicken and red pepper and cook until chicken is no longer pink but oblique in color. Add spinach stir and cook 2-3 minutes or until spinach is wilted.

Drain off all but 1 tablespoon of liquid. Stir in garlic cream sauce. Stir until mixed about 6 minutes. Add the two cups cooked penne pasta and mix in. Next add the pine nuts and mix till well incorporated.

Remove from heat, plate and serve.

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If you wanted you can lightly roast the pine nuts to increase their flavor. Roasting them would be done the same as you would roast other nuts, like almonds or pecans.

Spread the nuts over a cookie sheet and place in the oven on 350 for about 8 to 10 minutes, stir the nuts once. To add more intense garlic flavor to this recipe, mix 1 to 2 teaspoons of olive oil, and 1/2 to 1 teaspoon of garlic powder with the nuts before roasting them.

To learn more about cruciferous vegetables, such as spinach is, link here to the Health News Library and scroll the page to review the articles and add to your knowledge on nutrition.

 

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