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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
My husband and I thought we'd make baked beans for supper tonight. we've never done this before. We soaked the navy beans overnight then this morning put them into the slowcooker along with the other ingredients thinking they would be cooked by dinner. They are still not cooked! It's been almost 12 hours. Are you suppose to boil them in water on there own and then put them in the slow cooker with the rest of the ingredients? At this rate, we'll be having them for breakfast tomorrow. Please help!

 

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Maybe I'm not the best person to reply. Kreeli is a wonderful cook and could give you better pointers, but here goes.

Beans are tricky. If you start out with dry beans, whether they come out well can depend on a number of factors, some of which may be beyond your control.

Sometimes, if the package you buy in the store is old, the beans just won't cook properly. On the other hand, if the package is new, the beans will cook up fine. Some "batches" just take longer to cook than others.

Most recipes probably call for soaking the beans, then changing the rinse water, then bring the beans to a boil, then letting them simmer.

I am not sure how this ties into using a slow cooker and combining them with other ingredients.

Maybe try cooking the beans separately in a pot until you get the hang of it.

Then, the next time, maybe try adding the beans to the slow cooker only after bringing them to a boil and letting them simmer for a while.
 

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i did this the first time i made baked beans, too!

yes, you should cook the beans completely before slow-cooking them.

i'm sorry this batch didn't work out for you. i'm sure they'll be better next time! here's my method:

rinse the beans, and pick any grass or rocks out of them. place in a pot covered with 2 inches of water. bring to a boil for 2-3 minutes, then turn off the heat and let the beans soak for an hour. rinse, add back to the pot with fresh water, and then bring to a boil and cook until tender.

then add to to other ingredients in your slow cooker or casserole dish and bake. if you do it in the oven, bake at 250 for 6-8 hours, covered, stirring occassionally and adding more water if neccessary.
 

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I make baked beans all the time in my slow cooker. If you put in tomato sauce it will take forever to cook the beans. I always soak them overnight or do as Kreeli does and bring them to a boil and let soak for an hour or so. Then I put them in the slow cooker and add boiling water and turn the cooker on high. They usually cook in 2 or 3 hours. Then I add ketchup or tomato sauce or paste, molasses, brown sugar, onion powder or onion, a little garlic, mustard and salt. Then I let them slow cook for several hours. Try them again--don't give up on beans


Isabella
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
thanks guys. After about 12 hours in the slow cooker, they were soft enough to eat but by that time it was midnight and I didn't feel like beans anymore! We're having them tonight for dinner. Next time I'll definitely follow your directions. Much appreciated!
 

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a crockpot
 

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heinz baked beans!
Oops! Sorry! That wasn't much help! I think it's great you are trying to make them. I really want to do that too now
 

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(I found this with that silly similar threads feature.)

I cook beans in my crock pot all the time. They do fine when it's just beans and water, and take 8-10 hours unsoaked. When I add about 2 cups of soaked overnight dry beans to my soup (with broth and a ton of other veggies) I have the same problem. Last time I had to dump it all into a pot and cook it on the stove. Good thing I had some snacks to tide me over!
 

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Some food ingredients will prevent beans from cooking. I'm not sure what tho. Salt may be a culprit, as may any kind of oil. I see Isabella mentioned tomato sauce.

If you cook them in plain water, small beans such as pea beans or navy beans will cook to mushy softness in less than 1 hour.

I just don't see the point of a "slow" cooker. Is stuff really cooked slower in a slow cooker, or do you just cook it longer? If you put water in a slow cooker, does it simmer as a result of the heat? If it does, it is cooking food just as fast as any other method. Once heat starts causing gas bubbles to form in water -- that means that the water is at the maximum temperature it will get. If you increase the amount of heat, you don't make the liquid any hotter, you merely boil it away faster (turn it to a gas faster). Cooking speed of anything sitting in a water emulsion, depends on temperature. The higher the temp, the faster it cooks. But if it is bubbling slow, it is 212 degrees F; if it is bubbling fast -- it is 212 degrees F. So food will cook at very nearly the same speed in simmering water as in rapidly boiling water.

Frankly, I think the longer you cook food, the more micronutrients you destroy. In my mind, the object of cooking is the same as the object of taking medicine -- you take as little as possible consistant with your aim of countering your illness or your symtoms; you cook food as little as possible consistant with your aim of having cooked food instead of raw food.

Do slowcookers not cause the water to simmer, bubble? If so, that would be the only way to cook food slower -- food will cook just a little slower at 180 degrees as it will at 212. Below about 150, it won't cook at all. So I am skeptical as to whether "slow cookers" are really slow cookers. I think they are just long cookers.
 

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I think my new cooker will simmer on hi, but that was after 9 hours. On low it doesn't do that.

I like the cooker because I can drop some pinto beans in in the morning and they will be done when I get home. I freeze the leftovers to have later. (I usually have them with collard greens, cornbread, and whatever else I decide. It's the only meat free meal my husband will eat, too.)

To do the soup, I end up putting the broth and any raw vegetables in in the morning, canned stuff later, and fresh seasonings about 2 hours prior to dinner (except bay leaves). I do that to avoid the mushiness, and it works pretty well.
 

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This is bizzare, I have had a similar thing happen when using tomato sauce in a casserole with potatoes, for some reason, they just didn't cook...Perhaps the tomatoes cause a type of chemical reaction when combined with other foods? Of course it could've been that the oil coats the food also, and it wasn't the tomatoes, I think I had used some olive oil too...I guess it would make sense that the oil would coat the beans (or in my case potatoes) and make them unable to absorb liquids properly...Hmmmmm....
 

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I 've had the experience that a certain food cooked right up without oil, but never seemed to cook if I added oil. Was it whole wheat couscous? I don't remember. Rice?
 

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Quote:
Originally Posted by eggplant View Post

This may sound stupid, but what exactly is a slow cooker?
Well, I have a West Bend slow cooker that is significantly different from a crock pot, at least in my mind.

It is like the second item pictured here:

http://www.amazon.com/exec/obidos/tg...481465-6734541

For one thing, mine is metal with a plastic lid and sits on a separate base with a heating surface that can serve as a griddle. Most crockpots are made of some sort of ceramic and have "bowls" that may or may not be removable from the heating element.
 

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That's a good price for that Joe, and free shipping to boot! (maybe I'll finally toss out my crockpot and get something new)
 
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