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How do you tell if dried beans are fresh?

post #1 of 11
Thread Starter 
I've been buying my beans from the supermarket and most of the red, black and kidney beans fall apart when I soak them. The colored part comes off or they are split in half. Does this mean they have been sitting on the shelf for too long?

Thanks!
post #2 of 11
How long are you soaking them? I have soaked mine and the skins loosen somewhat, but that is all. I soak for 8 hours and sometimes I don't soak at all, I just use a pressure cooker. I always buy in bulk and keep them in a cool dry place. I have had dried beans stored for a LONG time and I still use them.
post #3 of 11
If you are soaking them for 8 hours or less and your soaking them in cool/cold water not boiling or anything then it sounds like you have old beans.
post #4 of 11
Dried beans don't really go bad that I know of. If they're more thana couple of years old, they'll get even more dried out, but it just means they take longer to cook. Soaking them too long can cause them to fall apart.



http://www.centralbean.com/storeandsoak.html
post #5 of 11
Quote:
Originally Posted by Tesseract View Post

Dried beans don't really go bad that I know of.

In my experience, that's not true. When you buy dry beans, they should have an expiry date, and I suggest that you don't eat them if they are older. Let's just say eating beans that have gone bad is an experience not worth having.



One way I've learned for testing if beans are gone bad (but I don't know if it's a good test...) is just to notice if they float up to the surface when you put them in water for soaking. If they do, they've gone bad. However, this is not true for all types of beans. Black-eyed beans is an exception, as they float up regardless.

I no longer post here after the 2012 schism and exodus. (See my profile.) 

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I no longer post here after the 2012 schism and exodus. (See my profile.) 

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post #6 of 11
I took that information from the site I linked, which claims that if stored properly, they "will keep almost indefinitely." If anyone has a motivation to encourage throwing away old beans to get people to buy more of them, I would think it would be someone who sells beans, and they're not doing that.
post #7 of 11
Quote:
Originally Posted by Tesseract View Post

I took that information from the site I linked, which claims that if stored properly, they "will keep almost indefinitely." If anyone has a motivation to encourage throwing away old beans to get people to buy more of them, I would think it would be someone who sells beans, and they're not doing that.

I agree!
post #8 of 11
I agree with Tess. If you're getting consistently bad beans, it's probably a storage issue. I'd start shopping at a different store.
post #9 of 11
While beans will remain edible for about 10 years, after 3 or 4 years they tend to lose their viability, they won't sprout. If they have oil in them, like peanuts or soybeans, the oil can undergo a drastic and unpleasant change in flavor, after a few years, or sooner if they are not stored in complete darkeness most of the time.
post #10 of 11
Quote:
Originally Posted by Indian Summer View Post

In my experience, that's not true. When you buy dry beans, they should have an expiry date, and I suggest that you don't eat them if they are older. Let's just say eating beans that have gone bad is an experience not worth having.



One way I've learned for testing if beans are gone bad (but I don't know if it's a good test...) is just to notice if they float up to the surface when you put them in water for soaking. If they do, they've gone bad. However, this is not true for all types of beans. Black-eyed beans is an exception, as they float up regardless.

Which only goes to show that black-eyed beans are inherently bad and shouldn't be cooked or eaten at all.*





*Based solely on the fact that I can't stand black-eyed beans and will find ANY reason to avoid those hateful, nasty little buggers.
post #11 of 11
Quote:
Originally Posted by 4EverGrounded View Post

Which only goes to show that black-eyed beans are inherently bad and shouldn't be cooked or eaten at all.*





*Based solely on the fact that I can't stand black-eyed beans and will find ANY reason to avoid those hateful, nasty little buggers.

4EG,
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