The legume family (or beans to most of us) includes lentils, peas and peanuts.
These foods are the richest source of vegetable protein and are a good source of both soluble and insoluble dietary fiber.
Because they are nutritious, easy to store, and can be "problematic" to our digestion, we need to buy and try different varieties and learn to cook with them.
I'll show you how versatile they can be in your everyday cooking.
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As everyone knows, beans take some getting used to, or we just put up with the gaseous condition they create in our digestive systems. Some are affected more or less than others. Since there are many varieties, store the kind your family likes.
The following suggestions may reduce the indigestion isses a lot or a little, depending on your digestion system.
Although I love most legumes (particularly pinto beans), the challenge for me is the time it takes to prepare them on a regular basis. It takes planning ahead and I have a tendency to forget to soak them until it's too late.
A great way to cook them is to soak overnight in a crockpot. After soaking, pour off the water and refill with clean water (I have used part tomato juice - ummm good!). Add vegetables, meat, and spices to your taste and let the crockpot cook slowly and blend them all into a delicious dinner while you go about your day doing other things.
The WonderMill Grain Mill can grind many kinds of seeds and beans, but have you ever cooked with bean flour? It's especially good for those who need gluten-free foods.
Bean powder can be substituted for flour in many recipes. Make homemade cream of chicken soup by grinding 4 tablespoons of any white bean, add 1-3/4 cup of water, 4 teaspoons of chicken bouillon and cook over medium heat (about 3 minutes) until thick and creamy. Use white bean flour also to thicken sauces or gravies.
Use black bean flour in your chocolate cake or brownie recipes or add it to whole wheat bread to make a darker loaf.
An Instant Pot is an electric pressure cooker. Using a pressure cooker will make the cooking process for beans much easier and much faster.
My guess is that we would all eat beans more often if we used a pressure cooker to cook beans. Doing so eliminates the soaking period and shortens cooking time to about 1-2 hours, depending on the type of beans.
Beans and legumes of all varieties, in buckets and #10 cans can be purchased from Emergency Essentials and Augason Farms.
I’d love to hear what you have to say in the comments.