Sort your beans. Sometimes, tiny little stones make their way into your bag of dried beans. What we want to do is carefully pour a handful at a time and look through them. I just do this as I am putting them in my pot.
Here comes more seasoning…now to understand how I season my beans you’d pretty much have to meet my grandmother. She is as good hearted as the day is long, but a wee bit on the absentminded side (not that I’m any different!). So I called Grandmama about ten years or so ago when I was making dried beans for the first time.
A few minutes later I got another phone call…
A few minutes later I got ANOTHER phone call…
A few minutes later…
So basically, every time I go to make beans I just basically go about and add everything I can think of to add and then I know they’ll be like Grandmamas – except the kitchen sink, but I wouldn’t be surprised if she started adding that in eventually.
I add one tablespoon of sugar, because my great grandmother always did like to add a “lil bit of sugar in thangs”.
Now toss in your ham hock or bone or whatever you are going to use for the meat seasoning. You can do without that if you are a vegetarian…just pretend you put the ham in :). When my sister was a vegetarian, some time between her super model phase and learning to shoot a machine gun in the Army, my mother used to make pintos with ham as usual and then just hide the ham when Patti came to eat :).
Now just stir that up and bring to a boil. Once it is brought to a boil, turn it down to a simmer and simmer for several hours. I get mine on in the morning right after my son goes to school and then let it simmer all day, eating it at supper. By supper time that juice in the pot is every bit as good as the beans!!!
- 1 package Dried beans
- 1 tbsp Sugar
- 1 tbsp Salt
- 1 tbsp Pepper
- 3 tbsp Vegetable oil
- 1 package Ham hocks, sliced ham or bacon Optional and use as much as you like. Adds a nice flavor to the beans
- Sort your beans and place in a pot, covering with water. Let soak overnight.
- Drain soak water. Cover with new water. Add the following according to taste: Salt, pepper, sugar, and oil. A good rule of thumb is to start with a tablespoon of each and then taste it several hours later and add more if you think it needs it. Add one of the following for additional seasoning : Ham hock, ham bone, or slice of country ham. In a pinch, I have actually seasoned my beans with bacon before.
- Bring water to a simmer over medium-high heat. Cover and reduce heat to low. Stir the beans occasionally to make sure they don’t stick to the bottom of the pot, about every 30 minutes. Gently cook beans over low heat until tender and the consistency that you want, 60 to 90 minutes (may take more time depending on how you like them)