Science and Beans

G’day eaters!

How have your lives been?

It still feels a bit weird to me that I only post once or twice a week now. But now that I have cut back I marvel at the fact that I used to come up with things to post about 5 days a week.

But then again, I’m doing a lot less experimenting and recipe creating these days. I’ve gotten busier and dinner has to be on the table every night, so playing and picture taking has taken a back seat.

I did get to play a little yesterday, though, which was…interesting.

Actually, the words I used to describe dinner when I texted Leon was that it was a “science experiment.”

Doesn’t that sound appetizing?

Yeah…

My plan was to make a big pot of black beans similar to these delicious ones and serve them along side some tofu tacos.

Doesn’t that sound like a really great dinner? I sure thought so. And I’d been excited for it since I planned it out on Sunday.

Unfortunately, I had a little bean hubris.

As I was draining and rinsing my soaked beans I kept thinking to myself, “Wow, I’m so glad I cook my own beans. I don’t know why everybody doesn’t cook their own beans. It’s so easy.”acid and alkaline beans1

I totally jinxed myself, because at 6 o’clock (we eat around 8 o’clock), after literally multiple hours of boiling my beans, the beans were still hard.

They weren’t little rocks, but they were far from the soft pillows that these black beans are supposed to be.

So I Googled. And here’s where the science comes in.

Did you know that adding acidity to beans stops them from tenderizing? You’re supposed to fully cook beans and then add wine or lime or vinegar or whatever acid you’re adding.

Did you know that adding something alkaline (like a pinch of baking soda) to the cooking water speeds up the tenderizing of your beans?acid and alkaline beans2

Did you know that if you totally screw up your beans by adding the juice of a whole lime after only boiling them for a few minutes you can add a couple of pinches of baking soda and it will help (but not totally save) your beans?

Did you know that since I learned this I have been obsessively looking up the alkaline levels of foods? And doing that has confused me a lot, which is just one of the many reasons I’m not a scientist. (Another reason is that I got a 25/100 on the botany exam I was studying for in that original black beans post.)

Yeah…

Now we know!

And luckily, Leon claims to like his beans a little crunchy.

Isn’t he sweet?

Your turn, eaters:

What was the last cooking trick you learned?

Are you any good at science?

Later eaters!

Comments

  1. Wow, that's interesting! I didn't know that! I hardly ever make dried beans, but I do think it's a good idea. I need to plan ahead so I can do that! (And good one, Leon, haha)

Speak Your Mind

*