Cooking legumes

Cooking legumes

By
From
Good Better Green

My rough rule of thumb for beans in general is that they will yield 2½ to 3 times the volume (give or take a bit) and twice the weight (give or take a bit) after an overnight soak and cooking. Once rehydrated, beans cook in 15 minutes to 1½ hours, depending on the type of bean. There is much differing opinion on whether to add salt during cooking or after, as some cooks believe it prevents pulses and beans from becoming tender. In my experience this has never happened, and I ­find a bland bean quite a challenge to eat, so I am in the camp of adding a pinch of salt to the cooking liquid.

Ingredients

Quantity Ingredient
150-200g dried beans or lentils
1/2 teaspoon bicarbonate of soda
1 bay leaf
1 small onion, peeled and quartered
1-2 garlic cloves, bruised and peeled
pinch sea salt
5 black peppercorns
small strip kombu/kelp

Method

  1. Soak the beans or lentils in four times the volume of fresh, room-temperature water and the bicarbonate of soda for at least 12 hours, but up to 36 hours.
  2. Change the soaking water once a day if you soak for longer than a 24-hour period.
  3. When ready to cook, rinse the beans under cold running water, then place in a saucepan with plenty of fresh water, the bay leaf, onion, garlic, salt, peppercorns and kombu/kelp, if using.
  4. Bring the water to the boil, then turn down the heat and simmer with the lid on until the beans are tender. If you plan to use the cooking liquid later, you can boil the beans with the lid ajar, or uncovered, for some or all of the cooking time; this will help the liquid reduce and become favourful.
  5. Cooking time varies according to the type of bean and soaking time (see below), but it will take anything between 15 minutes to 1½ hours. Taste more than one bean to be sure they are tender, as they can cook at unequal rates.
  6. If you do not need the cooking liquid, drain the beans and use them as stated in your recipe.

Note

  • If you would like to sprout soaked beans or chickpeas before cooking, rinse them and leave them in a sieve, sprouting jar(s) or net for another day or two, or until tiny tails start growing from one end. At this point they are ready to cook.

Tags:
Back to top
    No results found
    No more results
      No results found
      No more results
        No results found
        No more results
          No results found
          No more results
            No results found
            No more results
              No results found
              No more results
              Please start typing to begin your search
              We're sorry but we had trouble running your search. Please try again