Dry Beans: to soak or not to soak?

Community Leader
Registered: 02-27-1999
Dry Beans: to soak or not to soak?
12
Sat, 01-15-2011 - 7:30pm

I've heard both sides of the issue debated with great authority; should you, or should you not, soak dry beans?

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Avatar for elc11
Community Leader
Registered: 06-16-1998
Sat, 01-15-2011 - 11:56pm

I soak them overnight in cold water, then drain the water and rinse them again, and use a crockpot to cook them. I have done the boil then simmer method a few times when I forgot to soak them, not enough times to notice if there is a difference in gas etc depending on the cooking methods...but I always heard that soaking would "take the gas out" because of sugars that leach out during the soak.

The rinsing of the soaked beans is a new step after I recently heard a report stating that rinsing would get rid of more of the sugars that cause the gas. I haven't been able to tell if it makes a difference.

Somewhere I heard that you should never add salt until the beans are thoroughly cooked or else the skins will be tough.

Today I made beans for "refried beans", except that I mash them in the crockpot so I don't use any oil.

Community Leader
Registered: 02-27-1999
Sun, 01-16-2011 - 5:43pm

Hi Elc!

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iVillage Member
Registered: 10-17-2000
Sun, 01-16-2011 - 7:37pm
I always soak mine overnight, sometimes changing the water a few times & then rinsing them before cooking. I've always heard not to put onions or salt in the beans until they were soft or they'll never get soft...don't know if that is true, but I don't, just in case.
I usually do my beans in a slow cooker with a ham bone or hocks. I just bought an electric pressure cooker Friday night & I'm looking forward to doing some beans in that. (Trying a pot roast tonight.)
In a house of 4 guys I don't think there is anything that decreases the gassiness of beans -- just say the word & they fart!!


Avatar for emty_nstr
Community Leader
Registered: 05-25-1999
Tue, 01-18-2011 - 9:41pm

For the most part I think soaking them gets them soft so they cook faster.

I was always told that if you break the skin of the beans there would be less gas. Then in that case would you do to broccoli?lol....

I have been trying to eat more fiber and the other day there was a box of oat bran cereal the cooking kind....in the "reduced or damaged bin" so I thought I would try them. The good thing about them is that you really got a lot to eat in a serving unlike the instant oatmeal that is about a quarter of a cup...but the other side is it gave me gas.....I have desided that anything that is really good for me which they say beans are, I will have to deal with the side effects......How do I do that? Thank Heaven's my husband likes them too....so...........

LOL....

Community Leader
Registered: 02-27-1999
Thu, 01-20-2011 - 11:58pm

There are so many "do's" and "don'ts" with bean cooking; I firmly believe that whatever works for you IS the right recipe!

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Community Leader
Registered: 02-27-1999
Thu, 01-20-2011 - 11:59pm
And nothing says MARRIED like a good fart joke!
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iVillage Member
Registered: 11-18-2008
Fri, 01-21-2011 - 1:26pm
I was always told that they had to be soaked overnight, so I assumed that was the case. Good to know that's not necessarily true, because I usually don't know that far in advance what I'll be having for dinner the next night.
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iVillage Member
Registered: 11-09-2008
Sun, 01-23-2011 - 5:40pm

My favorite way to cook dried beans is definately in the crockpot..the get cooked but not mushy..season with bacon, ham hocks or smoked turkey wings. Serve over rice with corn sticks and smoked sausage! Now you made me hungry Karen!

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iVillage Member
Registered: 11-09-2008
Sun, 01-23-2011 - 5:44pm

I'm with ya Karen..like camelia red beans and most every other bean except red beans..they are mealy tasting! I use pinto beans or black beans in my beef chili; white beans in my chicken chili.

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iVillage Member
Registered: 11-09-2008
Sun, 01-23-2011 - 5:46pm

Boys and men are sooo fascinated by body sounds and seeing who can pee the furthest. My brothers used to see who could spell their names on the concrete walls before they ran out of pee!

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