Cooking the Kidney Beans
Fun fact- raw kidney beans are toxic! This means that Kidney beans should always be well cooked. This toxin is easily killed off by boiling, so it is important to note that you should never cook raw, dried kidney beans in the slow cooker. According to the F.D.A., red kidney beans contain high concentrations of Phytohemagglutinin:
“The syndrome is usually caused by the ingestion of raw, soaked kidney beans, either alone or in salads or casseroles. As few as four or five raw beans can trigger symptoms. Several outbreaks have been associated with “slow cookers” or crock pots, or in casseroles which had not reached a high enough internal temperature to destroy the glycoprotein lectin. It has been shown that heating to 80°C may potentiate the toxicity five-fold, so that these beans are more toxic than if eaten raw. In studies of casseroles cooked in slow cookers, internal temperatures often did not exceed 75°C.”
Beans and legumes are a great source of fibre, protein, fibre, iron, B vitamins, potassium, magnesium and many other beneficial nutrients. I prefer dried beans over canned personally, they are more economical and I don’t like the tin taste that canned beans often have. They can be stored in the freezer for up to 3 months so you can prepare them in bulk to save time.
To kill the toxin safely, I boil my beans for 10 minutes on a high heat, fast rolling boil. I then totally drained the beans and replace the water. I then boil the beans for a further 45 minutes to an hour until they we totally cooked through and creamy in texture. I salt them once they are finished cooking, in the pot with the cooking water, and leave to infuse for about 5-10 minutes. Then I drain them off, lightly wash them and seal in 200g reusable Ziplock freezer bags.
They can be added easily to your homemade stews, salads, soups, dips.... the list is endless!
Here’s something a bit different to do with them -
You will need:
- 1 large carrot
- 1 onion, finely chopped
- 1 handful coriander, finely chopped
- 1 teaspoon cumin powder
- 1 teaspoon garam masala
- 400g cooked and drained JAR red kidney beans
- 2 tablespoons chickpea flour
- 4 tablespoons gluten free breadcrumbs
- 1 teaspoon black sesame seeds
How to Make the Patties
- If you are using prepared Kidney Beans, boil them for 2 minutes to heat through and drain. If you are using freshly cooked Kidney Beans, while they are still warm, mash them with your potato masher until they are a nice potato-mashy consistency. I like a full, bigger bean bits in there but this mash will help to bind the burger, so it does need to be an almost hummus consistency in most places. You can add some boiling water to get them to the right texture.
- In a frying pan, add the finely chopped onion, grated carrot, cumin and garam masala. Drizzle a little oil over and cook gently on a low heat to soften and toast the spices lightly.
- You can now add the coriander and the cooked carrot mixture to your kidney bean mash. Mix with a masher or a fork until you have a smooth-ish mash. Season with salt and freshly ground black pepper - taste the mixture to check.
- Stir in a heaped teaspoon of flour. I used chickpea flour, but you can use any flour you like the flavour of as that works as a binding agent.
- With kitchen gloves on, shape some of the mixture into a ball, about the size of a golf ball. Then gently between your palms flatten the burger into a patty shape.
- Bake for 20 min in an oven set to 180 degrees.
I serve mine with a homegrown rainbow tomato salad, avocado smear and a lovely sliced & lightly pickled cucumber & radish bowl. Enjoy!
With love from Megs,
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