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didn't wash the beans...

I soaked 2 cups of Bob's Red Mill 13 Bean Soup Mix last night, but i skipped the "wash the beans" step (don't ask).

So they soaked and plumped overnight. I rinsed them well this morning, added them to a pot with a ham hock and 2 1/2 quarts of clean cold water, brought to boil and now they are simmering.

I skimmed the scum that came from the initial boil, but the broth now is decidedly grey looking. They have been simmering for 45 minutes.

Is this pot of beans garbage?


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  1. Soaking and draining IS washing. So is rinsing. No fear. Besides that you're going to cook them Rest easy.

    3 Replies
    1. re: Plano Rose

      thank you! just tasted them, they're good.

      1. re: sukisooo

        the broth from mixed beans often looks funky. not to worry.

        1. re: magiesmom

          right, the broth can look like dirty dishwater. ;-(.

    2. Heck, I don't rinse them half the time,not because I forget but because I don't really see the point and plus I'm too lazy.
      I haven't died yet and I've been not rinsing for many years.

      1. washing beans? they spend hours in boiling water. don't fret.

        never washed a bean in my life.

        1. yes. yes, it is garbage. please send to my house for proper disposal.

          ok, not really. it is fine. I agree that you did wash them and it is not a big deal if you didn't.

          1. The gray is probably coming from the skins of one or more of the beans. I bet the beans, even the brightly colored ones, are turning a uniform color. Bean mixes like this look pretty in the package, but not so pretty when cooked.

            1. One thing that you should do is pick through the beans to discard bad ones and pebbles....especially pebbles.

              11 Replies
              1. re: fmed

                I know that bean packers have that particular agricultural product warning on all bean package labels, but in all my years of cooking beans, I've never found a pebble. I've never found a 4 leaf clover, either, I'm just unlucky, I guess.

                I do remove broken or shriveled beans, but I don't spend lots of time looking through the package.

                1. re: bushwickgirl

                  You have to think it's probably because one person twenty years ago sued them for a chipped tooth or something.

                  I never rinse, rarely even use beans or legumes that soak,. I throw them in by handfuls just in case, I feel like MAYBE once a looong time ago there was something in there. Or maybe I'm thinking of another, leafy substance?

                  1. re: bushwickgirl

                    It depends of where the beans originate. I've never found pebbles in du Puy lentils, but I often find pebbles in Indian skin-on dahl. They are easy to spot.

                    1. re: fmed

                      Skin-on dahl is not one I use much, and no, never seen a pebble in du Puy. I was referring to basic brands you'd find in the supermarket, Goya, Jack Rabbit, etc, although I see that greygarious found her lucky Goya pebble this week. I bet US packers have the sorting and cleaning process down to pretty darn 98%, whereas beans packed and imported from other countries may or may not be debris free, as noted by zzDan downthread.

                      I did get a couple bags of black eyed peas a few years back that came to life, literally, with what looked to be weevils. Lovely. Those needed some good rinsing!

                    2. re: bushwickgirl

                      Don't give up hope! After cooking probably 30 lbs of beans annually for over 10 years, I found my first pebble this week - bag of Goya small red beans.

                      Those multi-bean mixes suck in every dry-bean virgin. They are irresistible. You have a mental image of this gorgeous, colorful soup and find yourself with a dirt-colored hodgepodge of disintegrated lentils and undercooked cannelini. If you are really set on colorful bean soup, you need to soak and cook all your varieties separately, then add them to completely-cooked soup that has a relatively clear broth, like chicken vegetable or beef vegetable. I put 4 emptied 28-oz cans onto a rack above an inch of water in my pressure cooker, with water and a different soaked bean variety in each, selected for similar size and cooking times.

                      1. re: bushwickgirl

                        I've found a couple of pebbles over the years, as well as some bug bodies, various stems and leaves...just enough to **usually** make me remember to wash them.

                        I don't get too fussed if I don't, though -- the long cooking will deal with the bugs and stems, and the pebbles will sink to the bottom -- so I'm probably the only one that would find them in my soup later.

                      2. re: fmed

                        Well, chances are "pebbles" are more likely to be a bit of compacted dirt that dissolves with parboiling. More of an issue if you don't soak or parcook your beans....

                        1. re: Karl S

                          Hey, guys, I cook a lot of beans and I have found pebbles in them. Just thinking about costly dental work.....

                          1. re: soccermom13

                            i've had a pebble here and there in lentils. they're pretty easy to see when i pour a bunch in the pot.

                            1. re: soccermom13

                              A lot of the "stones" in beans are soil and will break down once soaked or cooked

                              1. re: soccermom13

                                Yes there are pebbles in beans. Not as much as used to be. Most beans we eat are from northern States like Montana and Dakotas plus Canada. Those beans are hi-tech sorted with less chance of stones. But if you buy imported chickpeas or beans like I see in a Mexican or Indian store. Then greater chance of tiny stone.

                          2. Ive been buying organic beans and find some beans are filthy. I had to stop buying from a chain called Richards. The garbanzos were so dirty I did 3 washings and the water was still black and stii found dirt in the bottom of my soak container. But on average I just look for stones, rinse a couple of times and then soak

                            2 Replies
                            1. re: scubadoo97

                              The more modern and industrialized processing (sorting and sifting) results in cleaner beans.

                              It's just another way in which big business separates us from the dirty messy world of producing our own food. :)

                              1. re: paulj

                                But some are better than others. I've purchased organic beans that weren't filthy from other sources