Black beans, commonly referred to as turtle beans, are scientifically called the Phaselous vulgaris. It is the common name for Castanospermum australe, also known as the Moreton Bay Chestnut. These beans come in shiny, dark and shell-like appearance. They have rich smoky flavors, for which they are compared to mushrooms. Black beans, along with navy, kidney and pinto beans, belong to the same group called “common beans”, as all of them are derived from a common bean ancestor that originated in Peru. Today countries like India, China, Brazil, Indonesia and United States are the leading producers of dried black beans. They are rich in minerals like molybdenum, magnesium, folate, manganese and iron. Black beans form a highly nutritious food and contribute significantly towards the growth and development of the body. They are considered a very good source of cholesterol-lowering fiber. The protein content in black beans is comparable to that in meat or dairy foods. Cooking black beans is a fairly simple process; the only problem being the long time required for making them tender. Want to know more? Go through the following recipe and know how to cook black beans.
Recipe For Cooking Black Beans
- Spread the black beans on a plate and manually remove the stones and debris, if any. Throw away the damaged or shriveled beans.
- Put the beans in a bowl, wash them, and rinse them thoroughly in a strainer. Run cold water over them and rinse until they become free of any dirt.
- Beans need to be soaked in water for some hours before cooking. This shortens the cooking time and also makes the beans easy to digest. Presoaking also helps prevent flatulence, by reducing the raffinose-type oligosaccharides, sugars.
- Black beans can be soaked in two different ways. You can cook the beans for two minutes in sufficient quantity of water and then allow the beans to stand for two hours.
- Another method is to soak them in cold water for eight hours or overnight and keep in the refrigerator, to prevent them from fermenting.
- Before cooking, make sure that you drain off the water from the beans and clean them once again, under the cold running water.
- You can cook the beans either in a pan or in a pressure cooker, though the later will cook the beans faster. Foam may be produced during the boiling of the beans, which you can skim off during the simmering process.
- Whatever way you choose to cook the beans, remember not to add any salty or acidic seasoning to them before they are cooked. If you add it before the beans are cooked, they will become tough and need longer cooking time.
- If you are in a hurry, you can go for the canned black beans, which are equally nutritious as the fresh ones. You can wash off the unnecessary additions on the canned beans before eating them. Just heat the beans for a short time, before consuming them.