How to Cook Dry Beans
The dried beans need to be precooked before use in a recipe that calls for a can of beans. We carry a great cookbook for using all those nutritious beans called Country Beans, by Rita Bingham. (item 364,$14.95) This cookbook is filled with quick dishes and meals the whole family will enjoy, and frequently calls for bean flour which is the fastest way to cook with beans. She recommends either a Quick Soak or Overnight Soak of dry beans, whole peas, and split peas (unless used in soup)before cooking but lentils do not require soaking.
Overnight method: wash and sort beans; place in a lg pot with 6 cups water per pound (about 2 cups) of beans. Let stand overnight. Discard soaking water and use fresh water for cooking.
Quick soak: Follow above instructions, but bring beans and water to a boil and cook 2 minutes. Remove from heat, cover, and let stand 1 hour. Discard soaking water and use fresh water for cooking.
Beans require 1 hour to 2 1/2 hours cooking, depending on the variety of bean. (There's a helpful chart in the Country Beans book, p. 179.) Cook soaked beans slowly over low heat until tender.
If you own a pressure cooker, dried beans can be prepared very quickly. I recommend Quick Cuisine (item 03381, $13.50) which contains a great reference chart for beans, another for vegetables, and so on. You'll find these two books at our website; here's a quick link for you: http://www.breadbeckers.com/store/pc/Books-c44.htm.