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May 13, 2007 10:27 PM

lupini beans???

i have literally been soaking and boiling some dried lupini beans for a week and they're still insanely bitter. is it time to give up?

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  1. A google search brought up this link that may help you...there are others.

    1. I bought some lupinis by mistake, thinking they were favas. I soaked them for 3 days, changing the water twice the first day, then once a day after that. This was according to some recipe I found online, also confirmed by the place I bought them. Then I boiled them until tender. They lost a lot of their bitterness and were edible, just not worth all that effort. I tossed them with some salt and we ate them as snacks. I'll never do it again.

      1. Lupini beans are a must in many italian households, especially over the holidays. We eat them more like an appetizer. I soak them for 24 hours and then boil them for about an hour. Once they cool I put them in a mason jar (actually right now they are in an old pickle jar) in water and about 1/4 cup of salt. I rinse them every 24 hours and resoak them in salt for about 2 weeks or so....much like when preparing fresh capers. We serve them in a marinade of olive oil, red wine viniger, and fresh basil. They are then eaten like nuts (they are not really soft), squeezing the bean out of the outer shelland discarding the shell. You can eat the shell if you like but its very tough. I actually like them pretty salty, so you can probably use less salt if you like...but thats really the key to getting rid of that bitterness.

        Our house is never without them...but I have never had them any other way.

        6 Replies
        1. re: crystinej

          i bought some of these suckers thinking they looked cool (and i cook a lot of beans anyway) and wanted to give them a try. so far i have: soaked overnight, then simmered for 1-2 hours, then changed the water and soaked for another day, then changed water, added salt and soaked for another day. and am now in my 5th day. i don't mind the prcoess, as long as the result is worth it, but when can i realistically begin tasting the bean to see if me likes? (i've already tried once and became an immediate sourpuss yesterday)

          1. re: mr mouther

            dear lord it's been a full week and while the texture is nice and the salt is deffy setting in, the bitterness stil comes after about 5 seconds of chewing necessitating a complete spit out. i'll let you know when they're finally edible. i'll probably celebrate with an entire six pack of beer in one sitting

          2. re: crystinej

            crystinej - question about your rinsing/soaking process: are you saying that after the beans cool and you put them in a jar w/ water and salt, you then rinse them every 24 hours for two weeks, or do you simply store them packed in salt for 2 weeks?

            It sounds like you've had positive results with your method...


            1. re: cucinci

              I rinse them and than resoak them in a new batch of salt water everyday or every other day for two weeks otherwise they tend to get slimy.

            2. re: crystinej

              crystine, this is all new info to me. When i posted about lupini on the Boston board, someone replied that there are many lupini varieties and that the white ones do not require all the prep described on this thread. have you had them? are they just not as tasty and that's why everyone goes to all this trouble for this variety?

              1. re: opinionatedchef

                hmmm we have only ever used the yellow ones of the bitter variety although I have heard that the white ones (L. angustifolius) do not require soaking. I have not tried these however.

            3. If you are old enough to have watched The Frugal Gourmet, you'll remember that Jeff Smith had a very ecumenical attitude toward food. He'd try all sorts of different cuisines and food items, and appreciated just about everything, but I distinctly recall a program wherein he tasted lupini beans and ruefully admitted that he didn't understand how people could eat them, since they were so very bitter.

              4 Replies
              1. re: greygarious

                today was the first day where i was actually able to swallow one of them, with the bitterness being far in the back. but still there. i'll just keep changing the water...

                1. re: mr mouther

                  OK, it's been two weeks and i actually was able to eat a bowl of em today. Not awful- I like the texture of beans after all. But holy shit what an effort for an ultimately flavorless snack. I'm gonna add some pickling spices, allspice berries and chili flakes and see if they become more tasty.
                  One thing that is a bonus, however, is the bowl of lupini bean skins after you're done eating em. Stick your fingers in em for the too-often-ignored pleasure of non-human sensuality

                  1. re: mr mouther

                    i realize this is becoming my lupini bean diary, but here's the deal: after pickling with spices, salt and sugar, these things have become pretty delicious. no special flavor on their own, but quite good now

                    1. re: mr mouther

                      Congrats mr mouther! It is certainly time consuming but a great tradition :)

              2. YUMMY RECIPE. LONG-WINDED STORY FOLLOWS. Guess cooking strange food comes naturally to me. I've made a delicious recipe that I really want to share. It was my first time making them. I didn't have any advice to go by and no recipes, just my Italian blood. I wanted to make them on Friday. I started soaking the dry beans Fri AM in Brita filtered water and changed the water twice Fri and then Sat AM, letting them soak overnight. Responsibilities stacked up, and when I came home that evening, I wasn't able to cook them, so I changed the water again, put them in the fridge, then changed the water again Sun morning. Then I started boiling them. They didn't look ready in 2 hrs, so I rinsed the water and put in fresh cold water. Maybe I'd have them for dinner instead of lunch. Another 2hrs later, they didn't look ready (why was the water yellow?), so I drained the water and added fresh Brita water. I boiled them another 4 hrs. They tasted ok. They had the nutty taste and texture of chickpeas, so I tried them with olive oil and vinegar, which was ok, but not superb. I tried a few other things, which were ok, but not amazing. So, I thought, "What stands good against hearty flavors?"
                And I mixed them and let them soak 2 days in SOBA-noodle sauce (it's a Japanese liquid which is part soy sauce and part mirin sugar-wine). WOW are they delicious. That sauce can stand up against the nutty flavor of buckwheat noodles or Lupini beans.