I read in my local newspaper that you could cook dry beans without soaking them first. All my life, I have been taught that dried beans HAD to be soaked overnight first, or they wouldn’t cook, and I believed it. So, every time that I wanted to cook some beans, I had to plan ahead, and start them soaking the night before. But this article in the paper said that all you had to do was just cook them a little longer, and they would not only cook just fine, but they would taste better. Well, I’m all for better taste, and, of course, easier cooking.
So I decided to try this out, and I thought that I would make Turkey Pumpkin Chili. These cold days, chili is perfect and this makes enough for plenty of leftovers. It uses Small White Beans that usually cook in a couple of hours, so I thought that it would be a perfect test. I rinsed the beans, and covered them with 5 or 6 inches of water, the same amount that I use when I soak them. I also added some garlic salt, since this chili really needed more salt the last time I made it.
Then I just brought them to a boil, gave them a stir, turned down the heat to simmer, and waited to see what would happen. I started testing them after about an hour or so, and was surprised that by then they were already almost cooked! I ended up cooking them about 2 hours – the same time as soaked beans!! I couldn’t tell if they tasted better, but they did taste good, and adding the salt made a huge difference in taste.