Bean obsession grows


For lunch today I had brown rice with black turtle beans in red onion and lime salsa sauce and a split fava bean dahl in an indian tomato based sauce with shredded kale and red silverbeet stirred in at the last minute. These were leftovers from two meals this week and they went surprisingly well together.

My obsession with beans, pulses, lentils etc has been growing steadily since we adopted a low meat diet a couple of years ago. However, the long cooking times has limited me mainly to split lentils during the week except during the times when I boil up the beans for the next night while cooking up the meal for the current night.

That obstacle exists no more.

Over the weekend, I bought an automatic electric pressure cooker.

Bung the beans in (preferably soaked overnight), select high pressure and punch in the time you want to cook it for. When it’s done, the machine keeps the beans hot. In the meantime, prepare the sauce or salsa and when that’s done drain and tip in the beans / lentils and either cook it some more or serve immediately.

My preparation time for going from dry to al-dente black beans has shrunk from 24 hours soaking and 2-3 hours of boiling to 20 minutes. Dried chickpeas at 30 minutes made them mushy enough to turn into hummus. Mind, it’s still far preferable to soak as that gets rid of the farty chemicals (it’s more important to do so for red kidney beans as they have additional chemicals that need to soak out).

Beans to try next: blue peas.

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