I love beans. Especially black-eyed beans which are a common store cupboard staple in Sierra Leone. And since variety is the spice of life I have recently begun cooking a lot more with other beans.
The super creamy black beans (also called turtle beans) are becoming one of my new favourites. They hold their shape during cooking and are a tasty way to add some protein to meals.
One of the main thing to remember about cooking black beans is that they can take between 1 – 3 hrs to cook depending on their age, size etc. I let them simmer away on the cooker whilst I am busy doing other important stuff like watching Grey’s Anatomy and before I can say Dr McDreamy they are all done. I tend to cook a rather large batch and keep them in the fridge and use them over the week in dishes such as salsa, rice and beans, salads, burgers, tacos, bean soups and chilli.
A tip moment here – adding salt to the beans at the start slows down the softening process so it is worth adding it in after about an hr of cooking. This is the first post in my pantry staple spotlight on black beans. The next two posts will be black bean recipes that a hopefully get you inspired to cooking with these full of taste little beans.
So here is my guide on how to cook black beans.
This is the first post in my pantry staple spotlight on black beans.
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How to Cook Black Beans
- Black beans turtle beans
- Water or stock
- Seasoning of your choice
- Pick through the beans and discard all stones and broken beans.
- Soak the beans in water over night - making sure that there is enough water to cover all which are going to swell. The longer you soak them the shorter the cooking time.
- Then drain and wash them and transfer them into a pot.
- Add enough water or stock so that the liquid is about 5cm above the beans and add in the seasoning (not salt). I generally add in garlic, bay leaves and sliced onions.
- Bring to the boil, then simmer partially uncovered for between 1hr - 3hr depending on how firm or soft you want your beans.
- Add in the salt after about 1h of simmering.
- If the cooking liquid dries out before the beans finish cooking then add some more.
- When cooked, drain the beans. You can reserve the cooking liquid and use it to cook rice or flavour soups and stews.