Tuesday, November 2, 2021

Dry Beans - Useful Hints and Tips and A Basic Dry Bean Mix

I've always liked beans and have several go-to recipes when I'm in the mood for them, but, for the purpose of economy, I plan to incorporate them a lot more in the days ahead. 

Below is a list of useful hints and tips when it comes to cooking with dry beans and a recipe for a Basic Dry Bean Mix.

- 1 cup of dried beans yields 2 1/2 cups cooked beans.

- Cooked beans and bean dishes freeze well and can be made ahead of time at your convenience.

- Cover beans with water to which 1 tablespoon of baking soda or salt has been added; soak overnight. This seems to eliminate some of the gas that beans tend to create in our systems. Soaking the beans also helps tenderize them. Pour off soaking water and rinse beans before adding the cooking water, unless otherwise stated in the recipe. 

- If you don't have time, or forget to soak the beans overnight, a quick way to tenderize them is to cover them with water to which 1 tablespoon of salt ha been added, bring to a boil and simmer for 1 to 2 hours before using them in a recipe.

- Most bean dishes may be cooked longer than stated in the recipe. 

- Reheating bean dishes enhances the flavor.

- Store beans in a cool, dry place in a tightly covered container to keep them from becoming too dry and hard. 

- Cooking time will vary depending upon the type and age of the bean being used and the hardness of the water.

- A small amount of butter or oil added to the beans during cooking time will keep down foam.

- Acids, such as tomatoes, should be added after the beans have cooked and are rather soft.

- If you are not used to eating a diet high in beans take it low and easy. Increase your intake a little at a time to help your intestinal tract adjust. Otherwise, you may experience the discomfort of bloating and gas. 


I plan on using this bean mix a lot this winter and will be referring back to this post when sharing recipes that use them.

1/3 cup of each bean = 4 cups already mixed

- Black beans
- Navy beans
- Red kidney beans
- Baby lima beans
- Pinto beans
- Lentils
- Pearl barley
- Black-eyed peas
- Split peas, both green and yellow

The original recipe also called for soy beans, chick peas, and whole green peas, none of which I had on hand, so I just added extra beans of the ones I had the most of in the list above.

Buy packages of these beans, usually in the smaller bags, and just mix them altogether, storing them in a large container. Don't bother measuring each type of bean for the mix. The packages are of different ounce sizes, so just open them up and mix. This gives a different variety and is always good and always ready to use.

If you prefer, already mixed beans may be purchased in many grocery and bulk food stores, as well.  

Until next time...

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1 comment:

  1. This is great! I never could figure out the proportions. Thanks for sharing at My Big Fat Menopausal Life's Share the Wealth Party. Have a fabulous weekend. See you again after the 15th!


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