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Pinto Beans Helpful Hints

Ever heard of bean flour? It may be your new best friend to sneak extra nutrients into your recipes and your family will never know! Simply grind whole, dry beans into a fine flour.

BEAN DO’S:
• Store dry beans in a cool, dry place.
• Soak your beans! It reduces cooking time by about one half, and saves vitamins, minerals and proteins which can be lost during prolonged heating — exceptions are lentils, split peas and black-eyed peas which may be cooked from their dry state.
• Soak beans in plenty of water. Use a 3:1 or 4:1 ratio of water to beans (see chart for soaking times).
•  Place presoaked beans in a pot and cover with fresh, cold water. Bring to a boil, reduce heat, partially cover and simmer them for the indicated length of time until they are soft and tender.

BEAN DON’TS:
•  Store dry beans in the refrigerator.
•  Add baking soda to hasten soaking or cooking time as it will decrease the nutritional content of the beans.
•  Add salt or any product high in calcium, magnesium or acid to the soaking or cooking water or beans will not soften (products with these elements should be added to cooking water or any recipe calling for partially cooked beans only after beans have reached desired tenderness).
•  Use microwave to cook dry beans – microwaving is fine for reheating beans that are already cooked, but dry beans need to be simmered slowly in lots of water to soften, tenderize and rehydrate properly.
Ever heard of bean flour? It may be your new best friend to sneak extra nutrients into your recipes and your family will never know! Simply grind whole, dry beans into a fine flour.

Bean flours are a great way to add nutrition and reduce fat in your recipes. Bean flour can be added to bread, casseroles, and even desserts without soaking, boiling, and waiting they way you do with whole beans. Bean flour can be added in small quantities to any baked goods without a change in flavor or texture. By adding bean flour to your bread it makes it a complete source of protein. Replace up to 25% of the white or wheat flour in our recipes with almost any variety of bean flour.

Add to soups, sauces, dips, sandwich fillings, and gravies. Whole dry beans, peas, and lentils ground into a fine flour will cook in only 3 minutes and make a creamy, nutritious soup.

Bean flour stores for up to 6 months on the shelf, 1 year if refrigerated.

Remember you can also use bean puree to replace any oil, shortening, or butter in your recipes. Simply blend bean flour or cooked beans and water to make a puree.

And again, see our Pinto Bean recipes for more ideas.

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