View Full Version : Need some advice on cooking beans

04-13-2008, 11:03 AM
I have a wonderful recipe for "white chili". In the past, I purchased canned beans and yesterday, I decided to buy dried beans and soak them overnight, as instructed. Here's my problem. Do I cook them as though they were canned, at this point? I wonder if they will be as tasty as the canned? It seems to me they might have more flavor, but will they be too hard? The recipe assumes one will use the canned beans.

And I thank you.

P. S. The instructions on the beans are a bit vague, at best.

Such problems, eh? :p

04-13-2008, 11:33 AM
When I make Boston Baked Beans, I soak the Navy beans overnight. Then I boil them for about 40 minutes. Then they get baked for 6 hours.

I'm pretty sure you would also need to boil yours, after soaking overnight; then proceed with the recipe.

04-13-2008, 11:47 AM
I just tested my beans, after the overnight soak and they DO need some cooking. I guess I will cook them slowly and stop when they are soft. I feel less than smart about this bean thing. Thanks again Grace.

04-13-2008, 05:06 PM
I'm pretty sure you would also need to boil yours, after soaking overnight; then proceed with the recipe.

I agree. My mom used to soak & then slow cook (simmer) the beans till
they were soft. It's been forever since I've had cornbread & beans.
yum,yum. :)

04-13-2008, 05:13 PM
I am still simmering the beans (chili) but rather like the firmness compared to the canned version.

Thanks for the hand holding. I learned a lot today! Sad, isn't it?!! :eek: Sure beats watching the snow fall outside. I know, I know. Where the heck is spring?

I will be eating chili for weeks to come. I love the recipe - if anyone is interested, PM me! :cool:

04-13-2008, 05:32 PM
As far as I'm concerned dried beans are just too much trouble. My husband makes a wonderful navy bean soup and includes such things as sliced baby carrots, celery, and green pepper in a tomoto sauce and chicken broth base.
We eat it with corn bread and cheddar cheese. The canned beans are always added last so they are not overcooked.

I am interested as to what is in your white chili.

04-13-2008, 05:55 PM
Oh, I don't think dried beans are trouble. I rather enjoy making Baked Beans from scratch.

Up until a few years ago, I even grew my own. That was an experience. I never had to worry about picking them too soon - just let them go until September when the plants were totally dry. Then shuck the beans. I would harvest enough for 4 bean casseroles for over the winter.

04-13-2008, 06:02 PM
The overnight thing is effortless. I like the taste and firmness of the soaked beans. That is not to say that the others are icky, just not my favorite. The drag was having to cook them a couple of hours after the soaking....oh well... I don't have a clue if there is a price difference. I suspect the cans are more expensive but still cheap considering the costs of milk and bread....etc.

Here is the recipe! I may as well share it with everyone! Beans, beans, beans....

White Chili

2 medium onions
6 chicken breast (halves)
1 T. olive oil
4 cloves of garlic minced
2 4oz. cans green chilies chopped (I pulse with processor)
2 tsp. ground cumin
1 ½ tsp. dried oregano crumbled
¼ tsp. cayenne red pepper
4 16 oz. cans white beans with juice
4 cups of chicken broth
12 oz. Monterey Jack cheese

Place chicken in cold water, bring to simmer until tender (15 mins.) Drain and cool and chop! Heat oil in same pan, medium high heat. Add onions, sauté 10 minutes. Stir in garlic, chilies, cumin, oregano and red pepper – sauté 2 minutes. Add undrained beans and chicken broth. Bring to boil. Reduce heat, add chicken until heated. Remove from heat. Add cheese, stir to melt and serve. And the best part – add a dollop of sour cream!

04-13-2008, 06:14 PM
Sallyanne - that sounds delicious!! I printed it off to try - love to make soup at least once a week. The green chilis and cumin sound like it would have great flavor. On my other bean soups - I do use dry beans and since I seldom remember to soak them at night, I simmer them all day. The best part of soup (for me) is smelling it all day anyway ;)

04-13-2008, 06:59 PM
4 16 oz. cans white beans with juice

How did you substitute this with the dry beans? Did you just use 64 oz of them without making up for the juice or did you add some of the water from when you cooked them?

04-13-2008, 08:17 PM
Oooooh... that sounds really good, Sallyanne! I love bean soup and lentil soups. So good and hearty and healthy.

You have snow now?! Ugh!!!! We're still getting all rain. At this point I'd rather have sun than snow though. I miss the sun!

04-13-2008, 10:48 PM
My mom would soak the beans and change the water before cooking.

I have tried both the soak and quick cook methods. The quick cook method make a brothier bean.

(Bean broth is good for infants too! When they start to eat solids you can sneak some strained bean juice into a bottle-Mexican old wives feeding tip.)

Refried beans?

Cook pinto beans until done.
Heat lard or bacon grease in a skillet, you can do veggie oil but the grease gives it a better flavor. Add beans and some broth-start with beans and add broth to get the consistency you want.

Add cheese if you want a stiffer bean-if you are making burritos or tacos it will keep the beans from falling out.

04-14-2008, 07:57 AM
Important: don't put salt in when you cook the soaked beans. Salt after they are cooked :)

04-14-2008, 08:34 AM
If you dump the soaking or parboiling water and cook the soaked/parboiled beans in fresh water, you lose some minerals but you also reduce your methane production significantly! I made bean-cabbage-millet soup (which decided it wanted to be more of a stew, which is fine with me - less spillage) and I also cooked the cabbage separately. I boiled water and then put the cut-up cabbage in the boiling water for 5 minutes, then drained it in a colander, and added it to the already-made soup. All the flavor, none of the gas!

Love, Columbine (whose day-job office is way too crowded to ignore such things)

04-14-2008, 07:03 PM
Moesha, I added another portion of chicken broth so I ended up putting in 8 oz. of broth rather than the four.

I did not use the bean broth, if you will, and I did not wash them either. I moved the beans to another pot, after doing the saute process.

I had some of the chili just moments ago. I love the zing! I also added a bit of red powdered chili pepper. And I left out the sour cream, cause I didn't have any in the house. I love it with the sour cream.....I don't care much for regular chili....but the white chili is just the best!