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Beans. Not a Fruit. Musical or Otherwise.

May 28, 2012

Warm weather always makes me think of picnic foods: potato salad, deviled eggs, and bean salad. I suppose there might have been some chicken wings or something, as well, but I tended to ignore those picnic foods.

But back to beans. Sometimes in the summer you just don’t want to eat  hot food. Beans are a great warm-weather protein option. Here at Better Bulk we stock both dried beans and beans in a can. Canned beans are a great option in a rush, especially since our Eden Organic Beans are in BPA free cans.

If you’re a frequent bean-eater, you may want to consider dried beans. It’s not as complicated as it seems. I keep mason jars of dried beans on my counter. Mung beans in particular make pretty decorations. It seems like a time-consuming endeavor, but I promise, it’s easier than it seems.

Take chick peas, for example. The night before I need them, I half fill a container with dried chick peas (they nearly double in size when soaked), and fill the container with water. Toss them in the fridge, and forget about them until tomorrow.  The next morning, drain off the water and pour chick peas into a pot. Cover with water, and bring to a boil. Reduce heat and let simmer for a couple of hours. Go watch an episode of the Celebrity Apprentice, or something equally lengthy. Your chick peas are done! They will keep for about three days, covered, in the fridge.

I’ve attached a handy chart so you know how long to soak and cook each variety of beans/peas/lentils:

BEAN COOKING CHART

DRIED BEANS

(1 CUP)

SOAKING TIME

REGULAR COOKING TIME

PRESSURE COOKING TIME

Adzuki

None

45-50 mins

15-20 mins

Black (Turtle)

Overnight

45-60 mins

15-20 mins

Black Eyed Peas

Overnight

1 hour

10 mins

Chick Peas

Overnight

1 ½ – 2 ½ hours

15-20 mins

Fava

Overnight

45-60 mins

Not Recommended

Kidney

Overnight

1-1 ½ hours

10 mins

Lentil, Red

None

20-30 mins

5-7 mins

Lentil, Green

None

30-45 mins

6-8 mins

Lima

Overnight

Regular: 60-90 mins

Baby: 45- 50 mins

Not Recommended

Mung

Overnight

1-1 ½ hours

8-10 mins

Pea, Split

None

35-40 mins

Not Recommended

Pinto

Overnight

1 ½ hours

10 mins

Soybean

Overnight

3 hours

15 mins

White (Great Northern, Navy, Marrow, Pea)

Overnight

45-60 mins

4-5 mins

If you’re looking for a quick and easy legume-based lunch this summer, here is one of my favorite vegan, gluten-free, protein-rich summer salads. Apologies that we don’t carry grape tomatoes, but the market opens soon! There is no link or cute blurb about the recipe creator, because it’s my own concoction. Hence the title:

BETTER BULK

RECIPES:

Kelly’s Quinoa Chick Pea

Concoction

1 cup organic quinoa, white or red (cooked)

1 organic avocado

1 cup organic chick peas

1 handful organic grape or cherry tomatoes

1 tbsp ground flax

1 tbsp Omega Nutrition Flax Oil

3 tbsp Omega Nutrition Apple Cider Vinegar

1 tsp garlic powder

½ tsp cayenne pepper

½ tsp dill weed

Mix ground flax, spices, oil and vinegar in a small bowl. Set dressing aside. Remove peel and pit from ripe avocado and mash the fruit. Mix with quinoa and chick peas. Add quartered tomatoes. Add dressing and mix until ‘concoction’ is coated. Serves 2.

Let me know what you think!

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