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  1. #1
    Nighttime Rider
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    Let's talk about beans.

    I'm still learning how to eat, and learning how to cook. I have ideas on how to buy and prepare the leafy greens, now I need help on beans.

    Honestly, I don't know much. From what i have read so far, they are a good source of protein. Beyond that, I'm not knowledgeable.

    The only beans that I have tried are the canned baked beans (Bush's Vegetarian). The can says they are white beans.

    So I wanted to buy them by the bag and couldn't find anything close. Black beans, kidney beans were there and a bunch of others I can't remember.

    What I want to accomplish is a cheap, easy, and healthy addition to my diet. I guess I'm looking for the Broccoli of the bean world. Something that can be boiled (steamed?) and served (novice cook)

    What is a good all around bean that i can buy in bulk?
    Beans are legumes right?
    I remember being told that certain beans are toxic and need to be heavily cooked. Any truth to this?

    My present goal is to limit meat consumption. I might experiment with the vegetarian intake but I have to take this one step at a time.

    Thanks in advance for the help.

    CE
    Last edited by CrimsonEclipse; 08-12-09 at 01:22 AM.

  2. #2
    Senior Member
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    The Bush Baked Beans are Navy beans. If you like the taste of baked beans but wanna do it homeade, look at recipes from allrecipes.com. Most call for a combo of bbq sauce and brown sugar but I think Bush uses molasses for the sweetener.

  3. #3
    Banned. ModoVincere's Avatar
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    dried beans are a good and cheap source of food. Soak the beans overnight before cooking them. It takes time, but its dirt cheap and as mentioned, the net is full of tasty recipes.
    Some of my favorite uses for beans are:

    Red beans and rice (I add andouille, but ymmv)
    Black beans in mexican and cuban cuisine
    Baked beans
    and bean soup.

    All can be had for mere pennys.

  4. #4
    Spelling Snob Hobartlemagne's Avatar
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    Actually, the only magical beans are black beans. I think they are the most delicious.

    Also- Dry beans are usually 4 times cheaper than canned.

    If you are concerned about nutrition, you need to look at how much sugar is in those canned, baked beans.

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  5. #5
    Senior Member late's Avatar
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    Lentils. You can get them canned, but they take less time to cook than most beans.

    Soak beans overnight, add a little baking soda to the water. You don't need to do that with lentils. You can cook up a bunch on the weekend and just throw a handful in this and that.
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  6. #6
    But on the road more MTBLover's Avatar
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    Not much to add, except here's an alternative soaking method-
    1. Pick over and rinse dried beans
    2. Put in pot of cold water, about 3x the amount of water as beans.
    3. Bring to boil and continue boiling for 1-2 minutes.
    4. Remove from heat and allow to soak for 1-2 hours. My rule of thumb is that when the beans/water are at room temp, they're ready to cook.
    5. Drain the beans and cook as per usual.

    Another thing- never salt the soaking or cooking water. Salt makes the beans tough. Season after cooking them.

    There are a kajillion recipes on the web, plus a number of good bean cookbooks around. Have fun!

    And yes, I agree that black beans are about the best- so are their close cousin small red beans (not kidneys, although these have their place). Garbanzos are great, but frankly those are the one bean I can't get quite right, so I use canned ones. They make the best hummus (although black beans do too- very trendy!).

  7. #7
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    I love beans - i eat tons of beans.

    The Goya Black Beans, and Goya Small White Beans, are a huge part of my diet.

    With the exception of lentils, I usually don't bother with dry beans. Speaking of lentils, there are many varieties beyond the tan-colored beans common in the supermarket. I like a lot of the darker lentils, including the so-called "french" lentils, but they can be expensive.

    Anyway, with the black and white beans, i make both cold bean salads, and hot dishes..., depending. just experiment - you will find something you like.

    here is a cold bean salad recipe that i just wrote up for a friend who asked for it:



    i usually use black beans, and small white beans in equal proportions - generally
    the Goya brand. the small white beans are the same size as the black beans.

    typically i use one can of each, which makes enough for two to have as a meal, or
    for ~6 to have as a side dish.

    drain and rinse the beans in a colander.

    mix them in a bowl with;

    about 1/2 a red bell pepper, and maybe 1/4 of an onion, diced.

    juice of about 1/2 to 1 lime, depending on how juicy.

    a couple of tablespoons of olive oil - don't need to use your best
    as the spices kind of take over.

    fresh cilantro (chopped)

    cumin - i like cumin, so i use a fair bit.., not sure how much though

    cayenne pepper (ground) - i like it pretty spicy.

    salt

    it's better if you let it sit for a while, in the fridge.

    that's the basic recipe - i vary it a bit, depending on what i have at home.

  8. #8
    One speed: FAST ! fordfasterr's Avatar
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    I have been eating the bush's dark red kidney beans over birds-eye mixed veggies with a glass of fat free milk.

    Once or twice a week.. I like beans =)
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  9. #9
    Senior Member nick burns's Avatar
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    I love beans, nutritious and so easy to prepare. Black beans, chick peas, lentils, and cannellini beans are absolute staples in my house. I usually buy canned because I don't want to have the soaking thing to worry about. There are a ton of recipes available online, just google the name of the bean, you'll find many.

  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by jgf310 View Post
    I love beans - i eat tons of beans.

    The Goya Black Beans, and Goya Small White Beans, are a huge part of my diet.

    With the exception of lentils, I usually don't bother with dry beans. Speaking of lentils, there are many varieties beyond the tan-colored beans common in the supermarket. I like a lot of the darker lentils, including the so-called "french" lentils, but they can be expensive.

    Anyway, with the black and white beans, i make both cold bean salads, and hot dishes..., depending. just experiment - you will find something you like.

    here is a cold bean salad recipe that i just wrote up for a friend who asked for it:



    i usually use black beans, and small white beans in equal proportions - generally
    the Goya brand. the small white beans are the same size as the black beans.

    typically i use one can of each, which makes enough for two to have as a meal, or
    for ~6 to have as a side dish.

    drain and rinse the beans in a colander.

    mix them in a bowl with;

    about 1/2 a red bell pepper, and maybe 1/4 of an onion, diced.

    juice of about 1/2 to 1 lime, depending on how juicy.

    a couple of tablespoons of olive oil - don't need to use your best
    as the spices kind of take over.

    fresh cilantro (chopped)

    cumin - i like cumin, so i use a fair bit.., not sure how much though

    cayenne pepper (ground) - i like it pretty spicy.

    salt

    it's better if you let it sit for a while, in the fridge.

    that's the basic recipe - i vary it a bit, depending on what i have at home.
    Buy a jar or tub of Goya Sofrito and stir that in with the beans. I like black beans with Sofrito and Goya spicy tomoto sauce.

  11. #11
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    I used to eat alot of beans. If you are starting with dry bean be sure to look them over for little rocks. You'll find them sometimes and they'll destroy a tooth.
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  12. #12
    Senior Member
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    The toxins you mentioned in beans are mostly neutralized with cooking, but they are often discussed by paleo diet enthusiasts as a way to dissuade people from eating them. Actually I think they have a good place in an idealized diet (have fiber, potassium, protein, carbs and low in fat). If your beans are cooked adequately then you won't get the intestinal distress and gas that they have the reputation for. Black beans and Pinto's are regarded by many as the most flavorful. A batch of black beans are tolerable without any added flavoring or even salt. You would not likely want to eat navy beans or great northern beans without salt and ham flavoring or other flavorings (mentioned above) -- BLAND. I count my 1/2 cup serving of black beans as one of my 7 to 9 servings of fruits and vegetables per day. I would probably not regularly eat more than 1/2 cup (of cooked beans) per day, but that's my personal preference. Also the fiber content is so high (about 7 grams per serving) and I think I only need about 25 grams a day total.

  13. #13
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    Rice is good in addition to beans - together you get all the proteins you want.

    If you want something quick (though not quite as cheap) take a can of black beans, put it in a bowl, nuke for 50 seconds, nuke a package of uncle ben's 90 second brown rice, mix with some taco seasoning, and you've got a nice meal.
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  14. #14
    Senior Member late's Avatar
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    I'd like to reiterate the bit about the baking soda. It will cut down on farts and make the beans easier to digest. It's an old cooks trick that you kids haven't picked up on yet.
    Last edited by late; 08-14-09 at 07:29 AM.
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  15. #15
    Bulimic Arsonist. Lamp-Shade's Avatar
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    Okay;
    HUMMUS.

  16. #16
    Bulldozer GirlAnachronism's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Lamp-Shade View Post
    Okay;
    HUMMUS.
    Mmm, hummus is great. I eat it with a couple of carrots every day as an afternoon snack. Chickpeas in general are great. I like to add them to veggie curries, or to Moroccan-style chicken.

    I add beans to most things I make; they're wonderful! Especially in salads, with some nuts, cheese, and olive oil, it's a great way to get lots of greens with some protein and fat too...

    I also like to mix beans in with quinoa and veggies, either as a side dish or a stand-alone meal, sometimes wrapped in a tortilla, for vegetarian meals with plenty of protein...
    You're not punk, and I'm telling everyone.

  17. #17
    Senior Member frymaster's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by GirlAnachronism View Post
    Chickpeas in general are great.
    which is the intro i needed to hype... moskowitz chickpea cutlets.

    seriously: best. burger. ever.

    Quote Originally Posted by GirlAnachronism View Post
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    i've got some new for you: i never was one.
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  18. #18
    Senior Member frymaster's Avatar
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    oh god, the profanity filter has broken my link. if you click on it, replace the **** with the 's word'.

    sheesh.
    "Let's try and keep the constructive answers in the commuting forum." --SheistyMike

  19. #19
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    I have been eating canned and dry beans all my life and I feel I have I have been done an injustice. Here is why.
    I went to my local farms market and bought some fresh Lima beans. Those were the best tasting beans I have had in all my life. The texture and creaminess is nothing compared to canned beans. Honestly after eating fresh beans I'm not sure if I can go back to plain old canned or even dry beans

  20. #20
    Bulimic Arsonist. Lamp-Shade's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by frymaster View Post
    oh god, the profanity filter has broken my link. if you click on it, replace the **** with the 's word'.

    sheesh.
    The taste filter deemed it too classy for BF's palate, you surely intended to say....

    I agree with the whole dried diy beans ending up better than canned beans. They are better. Better for you and better tasting because you can use cool things like bay leaf and cumin when you cook them instead of the average canning salt.
    BUT, sometimes they just arent good enough to devote that much energy to something like...cooking.....beans.....y'know?

  21. #21
    don't try this at home. rm -rf's Avatar
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    Garbanzo beans are great, but the dry ones take a long time to cook. This worked for me: Boil for 2 minutes, wait an hour, drain, add water and cook. I think it took 2.5 hours or more.

    They freeze well, so I make a lot at once, two 1 lb bags.

    I also make the "15 bean soup" bags from the grocery store, with extra canned tomatoes, chopped carrots, onions, hot sauce, etc. I freeze this, too, but the texture isn't so good after thawing. Still tastes good, though. I freeze 2 ladles full in a ziploc, so I can thaw out one big bowl's worth.

    I'll throw in my favorite brown rice recipe:
    I always use Trader Joe's Basmati brown rice--it's great.

    1 cup rice
    2.5 cups water
    use a quart size covered dish.
    Microwave on high for about 6 minutes to start it boiling,
    20% power for 30-40 minutes. (I use the 2nd cooking program to set both at once)
    No stirring or watching needed. Easy.

    Rice freezes pretty well, also.
    Last edited by rm -rf; 08-14-09 at 09:05 PM.

  22. #22
    LCI #1853
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    Beans and rice are a biker's friend...

    I use the dried beans... they're way cheaper than the canned stuff, and you can make them the way you like them. The key is to soak them overnight in cold water to rehydrate them, drain off the soak water, add fresh cold water, add a little olive oil or pork fat as your diet may allow, and let them simmer over a low flame for a few hours. Red beans, black beans, and pinto beans usually work best for this. Chop a little onion & celery in there for flavoring...

  23. #23
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    Beams and Greens, yum

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