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I've been cooking huge batches of beans when I have the time and then freezing them. They taste better and are cheaper than canned. My only problem seems to be chickpeas. The first time, they just didn't expand and were small and dry. The second time, they were normal size but still dry. I soak them overnight. Well I did the 2nd time. The 1st time I honestly don't remember, it's been too long and maybe I tried to do the quick soak thing. I figured I'd give it one more try and if it fails again, I will just buy them canned. I am still saving a lot on the other beans and lentils.<br><br>
So, any secrets for non-dry chick peas?
 

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Umm I've found them no more difficult than beans, but then tend to need longer cooking. After soaking overnight, they should expand and look roughly normal chickpea size (but still hard) and then I usually cook mine 1.5-2 hours (whereas most beans are 30-40 min) - basically untill you can eat one and it's soft.<br><br>
Is that the same as what you are doing? If so perhaps it's a bad batch of chickpeas? I don't know if such things exist mind you! But that's what I do for mine... no secret... and they come out softer than canned, and very nice.<br><br>
Also - are you perhaps adding salt to the water? I don't imagine so... not if you're beans are cooking fine... but this stops the bean from softening so you should only add salt once the bean is cooked untill soft.
 

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They're easier than other beans for me, just 'cause they're light colored and I can sort out bad/questionable looking ones easier, although I rarely find any that are like that, unlike pinto and kidney beans which there are always several in the bag that have bug holes in them or mold on them or just plain rotten looking.<br><br>
I soak them overnight at least. Sometimes it could be 2 days until I get to them, but doesn't seem to make any difference. Then I bring them to a violent boil, then low flame for 1.25 hours to 1.5 hours, depending how high the flame is. I'm cutting the cooking time short 15 minutes, 'cause I always throw them in with rice to be cooked, which of course, cooks the chick peas 15 more minutes. I've also looked closely at chick peas and noticed some of them are actually shrunken Alien heads.<br>
I emailed the government about this and they only replied : " thanks for helping us get rid of them ".
 

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I've had a bad batch that didn't seem to absorb water well. They were in a bag rather than the natural food store bin that I usually buy.<br>
I probably make more chickpeas than any other bean, so it's good I haven't that problem since.<br><br>
I have had it with other beans-I think kidney- and I used maybe 1/2 teaspoon of baking soda when I noticed they weren't softening. I don't know if that would apply to chickpeas, but it wouldn't hurt.
 

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This is what I do:<br><br>
1. soak for 12 hours in a heavy brine.<br>
2. wash and put into a pot and cover the beans with 1-2 inches fresh water (don't use the soak water), along with 2 bay leaves.<br>
3. leave the pot uncovered and bring it to a raging boil, then turn the heat down to a low-medium simmer, cover the pot and cook for 60 minutes.<br>
4. pull out 1-2 beans and mash them to see if they are soft enough. If not, cook for another 5 minutes and keep repeating if necessary.
 

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I've had trouble with dried chickpeas as well, so glad to see this good info here.<br><br><br>
Empty, thanks for doing your part to help save the world from an evil alien invasion!
 

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Dried chick-peas seem to have a shorter shelf-life than beans such as pintos or kidneys. Also, some beans are better quality beans. I've found that some bulk beans at coops are great while others are horrible, and it's just the same with bagged beans at the supermarket. My personal assessment over the years is that the larger and lighter dried beans taste better and are creamier when cooked. If you have access to and Arabic food store, I'd suggest Sadaf brand.<br><br>
How long do you cook them, and what do you intend to do with them after they are cooked? Do you freeze them in their liquid?<br><br>
FWIW, I've found that they are creamier if they sit in the fridge for a day before use or, even better, left in an unopened pressure cooker overnight (with the flame off).<br><br>
I don't believe that salting before or after, or soaking beans affects the beans at all. I actually had a taste test among about 40 people, years ago, and nobody could really tell the difference, overall.
 

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I use my pressure cooker. I soak them while I'm at work (with a lot of water...the first time I cooked them they soaked up the water and were a little drier than I like), so that's about 10 or so hours. Then I use my pressure cooker and cook them for about 10 minutes (or the upper end of the time suggested in the little book that came with the pressure cooker). Timing starts once the bob thing starts moving...<br><br>
Oh and I love my pressure cooker. Once night I went on a cookfest and was able to cook two different types of beans, made two dressings, quinoa, and hummus, all in about an hour. Definitely recommend investing in one if you cook dry beans a lot (I've heard that you don't have soak them if you do them in a pressure cooker, just add a little more cooking time, but I haven't tried this)
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
<div class="quote-container"><span>Quote:</span>
<div class="quote-block">Originally Posted by <strong>paperhanger</strong> <a href="/forum/post/3024974"><img alt="View Post" class="inlineimg" src="/img/forum/go_quote.gif" style=""></a><br><br>
Dried chick-peas seem to have a shorter shelf-life than beans such as pintos or kidneys. Also, some beans are better quality beans. I've found that some bulk beans at coops are great while others are horrible, and it's just the same with bagged beans at the supermarket. My personal assessment over the years is that the larger and lighter dried beans taste better and are creamier when cooked. If you have access to and Arabic food store, I'd suggest Sadaf brand.<br></div>
</div>
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I had had the bag I cooked just recently for a while and maybe that was the problem. I am usually super picky about using old food, too, but they looked fine so I did. There is an Indian store nearby where I get spices and will have to look for Sadaf brand and try it again.<br><br>
Thanks for the tips, everyone. I am adding a pressure cooker to my wish list. It would be nice to accomplish that much cooking that quickly.
 

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I love my pressure cooker for cooking beans unless I want to do multiple batches...between all of the waiting time, it's easier to have multiple pans going on the stove at the same time!<br><br>
I do the same though for about 1 1/2 hours stove top, or 10-12 minutes in the pressure cooker after coming to pressure
 

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The water is very hard where I live so I've always had trouble with chickpeas. However the last time I soaked a batch I got called out of town before I had a chance to cook them and they ended up soaking for over three days. Interestingly when I finally did get around to cooking them they turned out beautifully. I think they just take longer than other beans, especially if you have hard water.
 

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<div class="quote-container"><span>Quote:</span>
<div class="quote-block">Originally Posted by <strong>Digger</strong> <a href="/forum/post/3025182"><img alt="View Post" class="inlineimg" src="/img/forum/go_quote.gif" style=""></a><br><br>
The water is very hard where I live so I've always had trouble with chickpeas. However the last time I soaked a batch I got called out of town before I had a chance to cook them and they ended up soaking for over three days. Interestingly when I finally did get around to cooking them they turned out beautifully. I think they just take longer than other beans, especially if you have hard water.</div>
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Ah, that just may be the answer. We have hard water as well.
 

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^So maybe the alkalinity of baking soda would be the answer?
 

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Increasing alkalinity has been proven to soften the <i>skins</i> of beans, in general, and this is where most of the recipes calling for baking soda come from. I think we should have a VB meetup where we test all permutations over all beans, amendments, and cooking pressures. I'll provide the testing ground, beans, water, vessels, and amendments. Someone else needs to bring beer and music.
 
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