Sunday, April 13, 2008

Beans, Glorious Beans

Now I'll be the first to admit that I don't know beans about cooking beans. I have a lot as you can see in the picture but I've had the same stash of beans for a very long time. They are sort of mystical to cook since we can get in them in a can and they are ready to use. For some this isn't rocket science. For me, it is. I haven't often tried to use dried beans. I worry about the time it takes, I worry about seasoning them well. Usually, I abandon the process and get out my trusty can opener. The problem with this is cost. Dried beans are a tiny fraction of the cost of canned. I can purchase 1 lb of beans for around $0.70 dried. That same pound of beans yields about 6 cups of cooked beans. I can buy a can of beans (around 16 oz) for around $1.00 ($0.50 if its a good sale). That is only 2 cups of cooked beans! We are talking a major savings by planning ahead a little bit. Dave Ramsey often tells his callers to live on beans and rice, rice and beans. This is why.
So, in an effort to learn how to function in the kitchen with this little mystery I am undertaking beans. I cleaned out my bean cabinet in order to attempt to get aquainted with them. I have alot more than I thought. Given how often we eat these this amount would probably last another five or six years. I'm hoping to correct that though. First, I realized that we don't ever eat pinto beans but that is what I have stored the most of. I definitly need to increase our black bean stash. They are our favorite. I also have pink beans, what the heck are these and how do you cook them? If you know please tell me.

I have these two bottles of white beans. I bought the bags at the grocery store and put them in these bottles. They have the PETE symbol which means they are safe for food storage. They also work well for water (I'll get to that later). I like white beans too, once again cannot for the life of me make them taste the way I like them.

This is a picure of my bean cabinet. I like to keep like items together. This allows them to play with their friends and for me to find them easily when I go hunting for them. This is one of those cabinets that is wasted space in my kitchen (I actually have a lot of that). It isn't wasted in my house. Every cranny is filled with #10 cans. This keeps the food in my kitchen where I will use it and it also fills space that would otherwise be infuriating.


The Gallands said...

Ready for some more posts...did you figure out how to do the beans?????

Another bean question- if you keep them in the plastic bottles- will they still last for 30 yrs?

GuGarden said...


Shortcake1030 said...

I have been researching food storage and emergency preparedness a lot lately (which led me to this great site). My mother-in-law led me to, which is a great site for food storage and organization. They have systems that will rotate your cans on a first in first out basis, so nothing ever expires. Their systems also hold a lot of cans.