Monday, January 18, 2010

Bean Tricks

Most people know that beans are one of the cheapest proteins, low in fat, and chock full of nutrition. Most people also are turned off by beans by their flatulent side effects and many dislike the taste of beans.
Beans don't need to cause gassiness if they are prepared the correct way. They can taste quite delicious if combined with the right foods.

To prevent gassiness in beans:
Soak the beans in water for 12 hours. Pour off the water and use new water to cook the beans.
Or sprout the beans for a few days before cooking them.

If you forgot to prepare the beans ahead of time, you can do any of these quickly to get rid of the gassiness:
Boil the beans in water for 2 minutes and then let them soak in that boiling water for an hour. Pour off that water and cook the beans in new water.
Quick soak the beans by putting the beans in a pressure cooker and bringing to pressure for 2 minutes. Run the pressure cooker under cold water to cool it off quickly. Pour out the water and cook the beans with new water.

If you add a teaspoon of baking soda to the water while the beans are cooking, this will also diminish the after-effects.

Tasty Beans
Beans usually have a dryness to them that may not be too apealing. Adding a fat to the beans will usually make them be much more palatable.
The best flavors to mix with beans are tomato, cheese, fried onions, or meat.
I plan on posting many bean recipes in the future on my blog.

Other Bean Advice
Don't cook the beans with salt or acidic things until they've softened. Salt and acid cause the beans to take much longer to soften. Only add the flavorings to the beans after they've been fully cooked.
Beans take a long time to cook. Cook them with lots of water on low for many hours, cook them in a crock pot, or cook them in a pressure cooker.

Do you often make beans? What's your favorite way to make them? Which method do you use to reduce their gassiness?


  1. Have you heard of cooking the beans with ajwain or epozte spices to help reduce gas?

    One is Indian and the other is Mexican. I haven't tried them yet, trying to find them first!

  2. I like to make a huge batch of beans and freeze them for the days I want to cook with them but either forgot to soak some ahead of time or find out guests are coming over and I need to make something bigger for everyone to eat.
    One way, I get my kids to eat beans and to use up whatever meat I have is in a crock pot start cooking some meat (a meat with some fat is better but anything will work) with a little bbq sauce and take out a some frozen beans (or you can use 2-4 cans worth). Once the meat is about 3/4 of the way cooked add the beans and if needed more bbq sauce. If its a meat that isn't making its own fat you will need to add some water to the mixture. At this point I also add onions and peppers (if I have them) to the pot. Then I make a pot of rice. Once everything is done, cover the bottom of a bowl with the rice and cover with the crock pot mixture; liquid and all.

    Normally this meal costs me per serving less than 75 cents. Of course it depends on the meat I use though I prefer pork which I get on sale.


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