Cooking Black Beans
Cooking tips for the caring cook.
Preparing Black Beans
- To prepare your own black beans rather than using canned ones, simply place the soaked and drained black beans in a pot and add cold water to cover by several inches.
- Add about one teaspoon salt to the cooking water for every 2 cups of dried beans. Bring to a boil over high heat, skim off the foam that rises to the top and reduce the heat to low. Partially cover the pot and simmer very gently (for black beans 30 to 60 minutes).
- Do not add salt until the end of cooking as salt has a hardening effect: it toughens the skin and stops the inside from becoming tender.
Slow cooking is essential; boiling the black beans will cause their skins to split.
Both dried and canned black beans are available throughout the year. Dried beans are generally available in prepackaged containers as well as in bulk bins. With a rich flavor that has been compared to mushrooms, black beans have a velvety texture while holding their shape well during cooking.