Red Beans - Slow Cooker
Anyone out there have a good red beans (think red beans and rice) recipe for a slow cooker?
My favorite resturant that made them has closed down and I've been dying for some!
I like them to be the nice large kidney type beans that aren't mushed up like refried beans, but are left whole with lots of flavor.
I've never made them in my life, but I'm not afraid to start with dried beans...
Thanks for the help!
I prefer regular size red beans but kidney beans would be OK; Paul Prudhomme likes the latter. Don't use canned beans, that would be a mushy disaster at the end.
All Cajun recipes that I've seen have the same ingredients - red beans, onion, green pepper, celery, garlic, smoked pork product and some herbs and spices of the cooks choice.
Soak one lb.of dried beans overnight in 3x water. Drain. Saute one minced onion, one minced green pepper, 1 c. minced celery and four cloves chopped garlic in oil until soft. Return the beans to the slow cooker with the veggies, smoked pork (I'm religious about HAM HOCK, 2-4 ea), herbs/spices (bay leaf, oregano, black pepper, thyme, cayenne) and cover with 1/2 inch of water.
Cook on high for two hours, then reduce to lowest low and cook for six hours or until the beans are barely tender. Remove 1/4 of the beans, puree, and return to the pot. Remove the ham hock, strip the meat and return to the pot. Add a little salt if needed. Cook for one hour more. Serve over rice. Repeat :-)!
Incidentally, it's been my experience that RB&R freezes *really* well, and usually tastes even better after that. Don't know why but since a crock pot full is too much for DH and I to eat even in a few meals, I always end up freezing some.
My old Rival crockpot needed to be set on high to cook dried legumes. If set on low, what you ended up with were hot, wet, raw beans.
IMO, slow cookers are not a good way to get lovely, pristine, salad-quality whole beans. They end up a little battered looking, which is OK for most bean applications.
Interestingly my experience is the exact opposite of Sharuf.
The key is soaking, soaking, soaking, start cooking on high, finish on low.
Dried beans that haven't been in a warehouse for years should be ready in 12 - 18 hr, garbanzos should have two days. Soak in a cool place. Change the water every 12 hours or so.
Never start on low temp - cook on high for two hours just to get the beans up to a simmer, then reduce to low.
Supposedly newer cookers don't really have a 'low' temp due to people getting sick from putting raw, cold meat in and never cooking on high. Low temps aren't a problem with my 25+ year old Hamilton Beach, don't know about Sharufs cooker.
If you only cook on high, yes, you will have exploded beans that are definitely not salad quality.
I like the Red Beans and Rice recipe from Lynn Alley's book, The Gourmet Slow Cooker. I prefer the more traditional red beans (they keep their shape in this recipe), but you could probably use kidney beans just as well.
2 cuos dried red beans
6 to 8 cups water
1 or 2 smoked pork chops
3 celery stalks, finely chopped
1 yellow onion, finely chopped
1 green bell pepper, finely chopped
2 bay leaves
3 sprigs thyme
3 springs oregano
1 tablespoon chopped fresh garlic
1/2 teaspoon ground cayenne pepper or crushed red pepper flakes
1 tablespoon Tabasco sauce
1 pound andouille sausages, diagonally sliced
4 to six cups cooked white rice
Rinse and sort through beans. Place them in the slow cooker and add enough water to cover. Cover and cook on high for two hours, or until just tender. Add port chops, celery, bell pepper, bay leaves, thyme, oregano, garlic cayenne, Tabasco, and sausanges. Cover and cook on low for 6 hours, until the beans are very tender and the pork chops are falling apart. Remove and discard the port chop bones the break up any large chunks of meat. Remove and discard bay leaves, thyme, and oregano.
Divide the rice among shallow bowls sppon beans over the rice, dividing the meat evenly, and serve immediately.
Hopefully you've gotten a response for this recipe, but just in case someone else needs it....this particular one (I've have it too) recommends that you soak the beans overnight. I personally do not keep the water from soaking the beans, so I add fresh water afterward, which should be just enough to cover them at that point.