I am trying to buy more dry legumes since that is environmentally friendlier and they taste better than the canned ones, but I always find myself still keeping some canned ones since I frequently decide I want to use legumes in a recipe the day of… and then I don’t have time to soak and cook them beforehand. Yes, I know I can use a pressure cooker, but I don’t want to own one of those again since they are bulky and a pain to clean.
However, with just s stove top and pot, I learned a way to speed up bean cooking from dried ones that I can do day-of–if I have 3 hours to spare–and also get a nice starchy vegetable broth out of it. Here’s what worked for me.
- Add desired amount of dry beans to a pot.
- Fill it with water so that there are about 3-4 inches of water above the beans.
- Bring it to a boil, and let that sit for 10 minutes.
- Turn off the heat and let it soak for at least 1 hour.
- Bring the water back to a boil, adding more if needed so there are still 3-4 inches above the beans.
- Let that sit again for another 10 minutes.
- Lower the heat to a simmer.
- Add bay leaves, garlic powder, onion powder, celery seeds, etc. Whatever are your favorite stew spices. But no salt.
- Add some garlic cloves.
- Add some vegetable scraps, peeled skins, etc. Examples: onion, carrot, celery, wilting herbs, etc.
- Let that all sit with a lid on top, slightly ajar, for 1 to 1.5 hours.
- In the last half hour of sitting, optionally add a few pinches of salt.
- Remove the vegetable scraps and bay leaves.
- Strain out the beans and preserve the starchy broth.
With 10oz of uncooked garbanzo beans, I end up with about 20oz of cooked beans and 3 cups of broth.