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SpaghettiWestern

Question about dried bean varieties

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I don't bother to soak any beans since I have been using the electric PC.

 

If they are fresh - new crop and I know they are, I find that 15-20 minutes is sufficient for MOST bean types but it can vary and from experience, of having cooked the various types many times, I know that for MY PERSONAL PREFERENCE I have to cook some varieties longer and I keep notes.

One of my favorite beans is the Snowcap and I like them cooked for about 25 minutes if I want them mostly whole and fully intact but if I am making bean soup, and have a ham hock or other smoked meat in the pot, they go for 40 minutes.

I recently cooked some black turtle beans, which I had bought well over a year ago and they took much longer than previously but they did reach the texture I wanted.

I also had to cook some large red kidney beans for over an hour at high pressure - after 40 minutes, the usual time, they were still hard, almost crunchy so I set it for another 40 minutes and they were just right for a bean "salad" with green beans and garbanzos (canned).  I didn't use them all so cooked the "leftovers" another 30 minutes so they got to the point where I could mash them to make one of the rice dishes I like.  

 

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Wow.  It would never even cross my mind to put any kind of vegetable in the pressure cooker for that long, I'm pretty stunned!  I often use pork stock for beans, and if I make it in the pressure cooker I will cook small smoked hocks for about 40 minutes.  But I do the stock separately precisely because it takes so much longer than my beans have been able to tolerate.

 

A bean that's intact after 40 minutes of pressure-cooking . . . all I can say is, I would be furious.    

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I made a pot of the RG Ayocote Amarillos this morning, just to follow up on JoNorvelleWalker's experience.  These beans did not have a best-by date on them (some of the non-Xoxoc RG beans do now), but I received them a couple of months ago.  I made them with my basic-beans recipe, which is how I usually test varieties I haven't had before.  It's not the same for every single type of bean, but anyway --

 

I soaked overnight in heavily salted water, which was then drained off.  The beans took awhile to start puckering up, which I have not found to be unusual for the larger beans.  In any case, they were squeezy-soft after the overnight soak, and had absorbed enough water that when I squeezed one, a small stream would spew out.  Stands to reason, but I had never noticed anything like this in any other bean.  

 

I cooked them in a clay bean pot with onion, green bell pepper, carrot, garlic, cilantro, celery, and a small amount of otherwise-unflavored ham hock stock.  By small amount, I mean about a cup of pork stock, with the rest water.

 

I added bay leaf, black pepper, and a little more salt at the start of cooking.  [I realize that this is against all kinds of rules and notions, but this is basically the way I make beans week in and week out.  The seasonings change somewhat, but not the salt part.  I am a serious salt person.]    

 

Anyway, for the last few weeks I"ve been using the clay pot with no flame-tamer, right on the grate.  So, kind of a high temperature simmer for the duration.  The beans were edible if firm after about 2 hours of cooking.  I then started reducing the liquid, and everything was tender and delicious by about 2 hours 45 minutes.  

 

As I've noted, the only other Ayocote that I've cooked to date is the Negro, and it did not take this long, or even long enough to be notable.  But, it is a significantly smaller bean.  It looks like the Amarillos and the Morados are a lot bigger than the Negros and the Blancos.

 

So, the Amarillos took what is for me a long time to cook, but nothing along the lines of JoNorvelleWalker's experience.  I suspect it was the soaking, for what that's worth.  


Edited by SLB (log)

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It could also be because except for the initial 15 minute boil I cooked my Ayocote Amarillo at a rather low temperature, for the most part.  Though I didn't measure.

 

Trying to decide what variety of bean to cook up next!

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Around 5 pm last night we decided we wanted taco salads and RG beans are a must.  I didn't have any already cooked and frozen so I busted out some Ayocote Morado.  Threw the bag in the pressure cooker along with  a quart and half of broth or so.  I pc'd them on high for 40 mins and used the natural release method which took another 32 mins.  Beans were still hard.  You could bite one in half, but they were not the pillows of goodness I was looking for.  So, I did another round in the pc for 30 more mins.  Let it try to natural release...decided we were too hungry to wait and did quick release after 15 mins.  Edible, but not as done as we like.  So, after dinner I did it once more for another 30 mins and did quick release.  Perfect.  So, not counting the minutes that it took for natural release I pc'd these beans for an hour and 40 mins.  Reminder to myself that these big beans take a lot more time.  I cannot fathom how long they would have taken on the stove.  OH and I obviously didn't pre-soak so that probably added a lot more time.

 

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(I squished that bean open so you could see the goodness inside :) )

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@Shelby around 5:00 pm tonight I saw your post and by 5:30 I had a quarter pound of Ayocote Morado in my Fissler.  I placed the beans, onion, garlic, bay leaf, water, salt in a liter canning jar inside the pressure cooker.

 

I think I shall err on the side of possibly overdone.  Not sure if that is even possible with Ayocote.

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It looks like Ayocote are the poster child for the overnight soak method, especially if you don't have a pressure cooker.

 

I just always do the soak step anyway after trying to make chili in a crockpot with dry red kidneys and all the other ingredients added before I went to work. I honestly can't remember if I soaked or not over 30 years ago or the provenance or freshness of the beans. I just know that the soaking method is my lifelong friend now. We were struggling then, so I cooked that chili for almost three days in the crockpot. The beans never became soft or edible. The acid in the tomato component may have been the culprit? I never add sugar to chili or beans, but that's supposed to be another hindrance to their softening.

 

I realize that there are many very credible proponents of no soak, but you know what? I like to change the water several times while soaking and some say that this washes away some of the stuff that causes the problem with beans that ladies do not like to mention. Don't know if that's what worked, but my beans don't have the unmentionable problem. :smile:

 

 

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If ayocote belong to the runner bean family, then yes, I imagine that driving back and forth over them for hours, followed by prolooooonged soaking and cooking at high pressure would all be beneficial! The fact that people do all (well, some) of these things tells you how tasty they are, though.

 

However, if you really want to make your pressure cooker earn its living, try cooking dried broad beans in it. The time is going to depend on whether you want cooked beans with a definite, chewy skin, or soup, of course. And if you have a modern spring-loaded pressure cooker, then Grandma's times will overcook the beans. I've seen anything from 6 to 40 minutes in Japanese recipes for SOAKED fava beans. I don't have any dried fava beans to hand (hard to find here in eastern Japan) but they are sometimes parched (shaken in a dry frypan until lightly scorched/starting to crack) before soaking and finally cooking, which is tasty as well as time-saving. If you are using solid-color dried runner beans, it may be worth trying this technique.

 

I've heard that problems that cannot be mentioned before or experienced by ladies of delicate upbringing can be overcome by simply eating more beans, so that your digestion gets used to them. But it's a risky procedure - a kind of baptism by, er, fire.

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4 hours ago, helenjp said:

If ayocote belong to the runner bean family, then yes, I imagine that driving back and forth over them for hours, followed by prolooooonged soaking and cooking at high pressure would all be beneficial! The fact that people do all (well, some) of these things tells you how tasty they are, though.

 

However, if you really want to make your pressure cooker earn its living, try cooking dried broad beans in it. The time is going to depend on whether you want cooked beans with a definite, chewy skin, or soup, of course. And if you have a modern spring-loaded pressure cooker, then Grandma's times will overcook the beans. I've seen anything from 6 to 40 minutes in Japanese recipes for SOAKED fava beans. I don't have any dried fava beans to hand (hard to find here in eastern Japan) but they are sometimes parched (shaken in a dry frypan until lightly scorched/starting to crack) before soaking and finally cooking, which is tasty as well as time-saving. If you are using solid-color dried runner beans, it may be worth trying this technique.

 

I've heard that problems that cannot be mentioned before or experienced by ladies of delicate upbringing can be overcome by simply eating more beans, so that your digestion gets used to them. But it's a risky procedure - a kind of baptism by, er, fire.

 

I love that closing paragraph! :D Now that you mention it, I have some dried - and shamefully old - fava beans I've been planning to use, finally.  They were an impulse buy, I don't remember when.  The plan has been to make Egyptian ful madames with them, but the first question is how to get them basically cooked.  I figured on a good long soak followed by some hours of simmering.  I don't have a pressure cooker at the moment.  Do you have a feel for how long to soak and how long to cook at normal pressure? 

 

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That parching method is fascinating!  I would've imagined that doing so would extend the cooking time, like with the pie weights.  

 

Soaking has gotten a bad rap, and loses round after round, but still I soak every bean.  I find that they not cook not only more quickly -- I about fell over dead at the report of four hours in the pressure cooker --  but also more evenly.  

 

On the unspeakable.  I have also heard that eating beans frequently is the antidote, and I definitely find that soaking helps (in fact, this is why I soak the quintessential no-soak bean, the lentil.  Unsoaked lentils cause me serious Problems).  That said -- I eat 'em almost every day, and I continue to be a lady with some Problems.  Not catastrophic problems, to be sure.  But smallish, persistent Problems.   


Edited by SLB (log)
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Tonight was Rio Zape.  Hour and a half in the pressure cooker (it was not intended to be so long) and finished on the stovetop with dried epazote and RG oregano indio.  That was it, that was dinner.  Along with a few chips, salsa, and sour cream.

 

Oh, and of course a glass or two of wine.

 

Beans keep getting better and better!  But now that I've discovered the pressure cooker I'm not sure my lovely olla will get much use.

 

 

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I actually just interviewed Diana Kennedy yesterday and after all the gossip, most of which I won't be able to share, I asked her about making beans. She's quite high up and she starts her beans in a pressure cooker and then finished them in a clay pot. 

So now you know!

 

 

ranchogordo-00530.jpg

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(This was at the divine El Molino Central in Sonoma and the other woman is proprietor Karen Waikiki.)

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Just to add another data point (sorry I missed this earlier), I made RG's Ayocote Amarillo beans last week and cooked, without soaking, for the oh-so-scientific "a few hours" until they were done. No pressure cooker, just a five minute vigorous boil to start and then a slow simmer until they were done.

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On 2/12/2016 at 5:39 AM, helenjp said:

I've heard that problems that cannot be mentioned before or experienced by ladies of delicate upbringing can be overcome by simply eating more beans, so that your digestion gets used to them. But it's a risky procedure - a kind of baptism by, er, fire.

 

Now I must share this misbegotten Mozilla Japan (i.e., Firefox) logo from about ten years ago, I think.

 

fox.png.a917aa5c154ba3efb531f466e5cbe5cc


Edited by Alex (log)
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Today is RG Ayocote Morados.  They were soaked overnight in heavily salted water, and are now mostly tender after an hour and a half of a brisk simmer in the clay pot.  There's still a touch of chalkiness, and the broth is too thin for my taste, so I'm lowering the temp and letting them simmer for a bit longer.  I remain startled at how long it's taking others' Ayocotes to cook through.  

 

The taste, however, is bringing commercial kidney beans to mind, which is in turn generating some PTSD-style terror.  [I, uh, rather dislike red kidney beans and would be thrilled if the variety went extinct and therefore no other child would be subjected to them, ever].  We'll see how it goes as they continue to cook.  I have enfrijoladas on the brain, but I may have to drench everything in an additional sauce of some kind.


Edited by SLB (log)
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Here are the Ayocote Morado enfrijolada-like things in my Mama's Corningware, with a fair amount of cheese baked on top and about a fourth-cup dressing of a whole additional sauce made with chipotles and sherry vinegar that I use for something else but had in the freezer.  

 

A touch dry, but ultimately not underflavored.  Echoing what RanchoGordo noted upthread about a different Ayocote bean, the Morado is really very starchy.  

 

 

2016-02-22 11.04.47.jpg


Edited by SLB (log)
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Today I made RG's Domingo Rojo beans for the first time. As suggested on the site I made red beans and rice,  the same recipe as I always make when I use the organic Dark Red Kidneys from Purcell Mountain Farms. The Rojo's were truly delicious and resulted in a very rich flavorful bean broth. They are a beautiful color, and after about a five hour soak turned the water a lovely scarlet.

 

Surprisingly, given how small they are, they took a bit longer to cook and needed a more liquid than most of the other varieties I buy from either source (never tried the Ayocote beans, though!)  I gave them about an extra 20 minutes and they could have gone a bit more, but my husband and I were really starving. They hold their shape amazingly well, and I think they would make a very good salad bean, not that I ever do that.

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I just made this with the domingo rojos. 
Truly weak in the knees time. 
Coconut Brown Rice and Domingo Rojos. 

Massa organic brown rice and our red beans, cooked in coconut milk. 

 

ranchogordo-9782.jpg

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31 minutes ago, rancho_gordo said:

I just made this with the domingo rojos. 
Truly weak in the knees time. 
Coconut Brown Rice and Domingo Rojos. 

Massa organic brown rice and our red beans, cooked in coconut milk. 

 

How about a recipe?  FWIW, I'm a big fan of the Massa brown rice.  Been using it almost exclusively for several years.

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