How to cook dried beans

Amy:

I found the following information on the Pulse Canada website (www.pulsecanada.com).  Check out their website for information about pulses (beans, peas and lentils) and recipe ideas!

I like to use a slow cooker to cook dried beans as it’s fuss free and they can cook away all day while I am at work or running around on the weekend.

 

Soaking Pulses

• Dry beans, whole peas and chickpeas must be soaked before cooking.

• Dry lentils and split peas do NOT require soaking and only need to be rinsed before cooking.

• Before soaking or cooking, remove any shriveled or broken seeds or any foreign matter such as dried soil or pebbles, then place in a sieve and rinse under cold running water.

• Always discard the soaking water, place pulses in strainer or sieve and rinse well under cold running water. This will wash away any carbohydrates responsible for flatulence.

Long Cold Soak or Overnight – Let stand 12 hours or overnight in refrigerator

Quick Soak – Bring pulses and water to boil in a saucepan and boil gently for 2 minutes. Remove from heat, cover, and let stand for 1 hour.

Microwave Soak – Combine pulses and water in a suitable microwave casserole dish, cover and microwave on high for 10-15 minutes. Let stand for 1 hour.

*For all three soaking methods, add 750 mL (3 cups) of water for every 250 mL (1 cup) of pulses.

 Cooking Dry Pulses

Pulses can be cooked on the stove top, in a slow cooker or pressure cooker, and for certain recipes such as baked beans, in the oven. Regardless of method used, acidic ingredients (such as tomatoes and vinegar) should be added only when the pulses are already tender, as acids and salt slow down the cooking process. However, seasonings such as garlic, onion and herbs may be added to the cooking water right from the beginning.

Some recipes suggest adding baking soda to help soften pulses. This is not recommended as baking soda destroys thiamin, and may make the pulses too soft.

Stove Top Cooking

• Combine pre-soaked pulses with water (5 mL or 1 tsp of oil to prevent foaming) and seasonings in a heavy saucepan.

• Use a large enough saucepan, as pulses double or triple in volume during cooking.

• Bring to a boil, cover tightly, reduce heat and simmer until they are just tender and not mushy.

Method Instructions

• Simmer pulses slowly as cooking too fast can break the seed coats.

• Guidelines for cooking times will vary with the type and age of the pulses, as well as with altitude and the hardness of the water.  Beans can take 1-2 hours in the stove or 6-8 hours in the slow cooker.

• Tasting is the best way to check if pulses are done. Cooked pulses are tender, have no “raw” taste, and crush easily in your mouth.

• 250 mL (1 cup) of dry pulses will yield approximately 500 to 750 ml (2 – 3 cups) or 2 – 3 times the original amount when cooked.

• Water amount can be adjusted for consistency required for the recipe

• Purée can be frozen in plastic bags or containers and kept for up to several months in the freezer.

Info from: www.pulsecanada.com

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