Flashcards in CONCEPT 28: DON'T SOAK BEANS - BRINE 'EM Deck (41):
Properly cooked beans should be what?
Bean should be creamy with soft skins.
Two problems people encounter with beans.
Skins are tough after hours of cooking; beans have exploded into a starchy mass.
What is foodstuff?
A substance with food value; especially : a specific nutrient (as a fat or protein).
Why are beans important foodstuffs?
They are high in protein and fiber, inexpensive, and shel-stable for years.
What are legumes?
Embryonic plants surrounded by hard seed coats.
The seed coats of legumes are made of mostly what?
Mostly carbohydrates and contains of significant amount of fiber.
The seed of a legume itself is rich in what?
Protein and starch.
Beans are best soaked overnight and what? Why?
Gently simmering allows beans to absorb water gradually and keeps them from exploding.
When cooking beans, what does rushing the process accomplish?
Starches swell unevenly and the skins burst; this makes beans sticky and gummy.
What's a smart way to cook most bean recipes? Explain.
Cooking in an oven; heat is more evenly distributed than a stovetop--many stovetops run to hot, even on low.
Because soaking beans overnight starts the hydration process, how much faster will they cook? Does this change the texture?
Up to 45 minutes faster and, more importantly, they seem to absorb water more evenly so the end result is a creamier texture.
Even with an overnight soak, what could offset the beans creamy texture?
A tough skin.
How do you stop beans from having tough skin?
Soaking beans in salted water.
How does salt effect bean skin?
As beans soak, the sodium ions replace calcium and magnesium ions in the skins. Because they form links between pectin molecules, they are responsible for creating strong cells that are tightly bound. Sodium ions weaken this link and create a softer texture.
Do sodium ions filter partially or all the way into a bean?
Only part way; they will affect the skin only.
Does getting the skins to soften reduce the number of beans that explode during cooking?
Yes, and this is the key to cooking them up creamy rather than starchy.
TEST KITCHEN: BRINED BEANS COOKED IN SALTED AND UNSALTED WATER, BEANS NOT BRINED AND COOKED IN SALTED AND UNSALTED WATER.
Bean the were brined and cooked in salted water were clear winners; brined and unsalted were largely intact with a few that burst. Many burst that weren't brined and cooked in salt water; every single bean for the last sample didn't remain intact.
Would cooking bean with a salty ingredient be just as effective?
Yes, using pancetta, parmesan, chicken broth or some combo is also pragmatic.
Does hard water = hard beans?
Yes, try to avoid cooking in hard water because bean will come out with tougher skins.
Why does hard water affect beans?
Two minerals in tap water, calcium and magnesium, are enemies of beans. When given the chance, they will reinforce the already strong pectin bonds.
If you only have hard water, will salt still be effective?
If pressed for time, what's a quick way to "soak" beans?
Combine salt, water and beans in a Dutch oven and bring to boil over high heat. Remove from stove, cover, and let stand for one hour.
What does cooking beans in a broth add?
Richness and flavor.
Oven temp used to cook beans.
Amount of salt per cup of beans.
1 1/2 TBSP
Besides hydration, cooking time of beans depends on what?
Age and variety.
What happens to kale if added too early in bean cooking process?
It becomes limp and gray.
Why shouldn't you add tomatoes in early cooking of beans?
Their acidity causes pectin in beans to be less soluble, strengthening the cell walls, preventing beans from softening.
When soaking, how much water for a cup of beans?
Beans: Though their coats look smooth and unbroken, starches are continually released into water through a section of their seed coat called what?
When bean starches absorb water and burst, what molecule do they release?
To keep vegetables vibrant, how should you cook them with beans?
Sauté, pull out, and add again later.
Besides fresh and canned tomatoes, what can provide big vegetable flavor?
V8 provides and arsenal of vegetal flavor.
What is a sofrito?
Traditional combination of garlic, bell pepper and onion.
How do you add flavor to beans?
Adding ingredients to infuse flavor while they cook.
Common problem with rice.
Undercooked top and scorched bottom.
What prevents individual rice grains from clumping and becoming sticky?
Rinsing them before cooking.
After being drained, brined lentils can be refrigerated for how long?
2 days before cooking.
Do most recipes soak lentils?
No, but it helps.
Do lentils need to be soaked as long as beans? Explain.
No, given their smaller size (as opposed to beans), you don't need to brine overnight.