Q1. Do canned beans need to be rinsed before they are used?
Ans. Whether or not the beans require rinsing depends on the recipe that you are using, so be sure to check instructions. If the beans are being served alone, you may want to rinse them to remove the liquid and starch that coat the beans when they are canned.
Q2. How long can I store dried beans?
Ans. Exposure to sunlight can dehydrate beans and prevent them from softening when cooked. When stored correctly, dried beans can last indefinitely.
Q3. I've heard that beans offer many health benefits. What are some of them?
Ans. According to The Wellness Encyclopedia of Food and Nutrition, beans are high in folic acid, which protects against birth defects and some forms of cancer in women. Beans are also excellent sources of iron, which encourage the proper development of red blood cells and other bodily tissues. The fiber in beans can prevent illnesses such as colon cancer and heart disease. The health benefits of beans are only an added bonus to their taste.
Q4. How do I cook dried beans?
Ans. Before cooking dried beans, rinse and discard any debris or stones. Bring water to a rapid boil and then add the beans. Bring the water to a boil again and then reduce the heat to very low until tender. Beans are fully cooked when a fork can mash them.
Q5. Should I soak my beans?
Ans. Presoaking beans shortens their cooking time by about 30 minutes.
Q6. What should I look for when buying dry beans?
Ans. Good beans are smooth and bright. Old beans have cracked seams, and are dull and wrinkled. The older the beans, the longer they take to cook.
Q7. What is the measure of dry beans vs. cooked?
Ans. 1 cup of dry beans = 2. 5 cups cooked beans