The macrobiotic way of making beans involves washing, sorting, and soaking dry beans, cooking slowly with kombu until soft, then seasoning with sea salt and sauteed vegetables (if desired) and simmering a while longer. These steps ensure that your beans will be soft, flavorful, and digestible. Once you master this technique, you can make any kind of bean from scratch. Just vary your seasonings depending on the bean. For example, try pinto beans with garlic, onion, and cilantro, garbanzo beans with garlic and parsley, or black-eyed peas with bay leaf, onion, celery, and carrot.Print
- 2 cups giant Peruvian lima beans
- spring or filtered water
- 2 inch piece kombu
- 4 cloves garlic, peeled
- 1 1/2 teaspoons sea salt
- 1 tablespoon fresh Italian parsley, finely chopped (optional)
- 1 tablespoon red bell pepper, finely chopped (optional)
- zest of 1/2 lemon (optional)
- Sort through beans, 1 cup at a time on a large plate, Discard any pebbles, broken beans, or other debris. Rinse beans and drain into a colander.
- Place rinsed beans in a large bowl and cover with at least 2 inches of spring or filtered water. Let soak for 6-12 hours (or overnight).
- Drain water from soaked beans and place in heavy-bottomed pot with enough water to cover beans by 1-2 inches.
- Bring beans to a boil. Let simmer uncovered for about 10-15 minutes and skimming foam that comes to the surface with a fine mesh skimmer.
- Add kombu and garlic, turn heat to low, and put lid on pot. Leave lid cracked a little so that the pot does not boil over. Periodically check the water level to make sure beans do not cook dry. More water should be added as needed to keep water just above the level of the beans.
- Cook beans for about 60-90 minutes, or until soft throughout.
- Add sea salt and simmer another 10 minutes.
- Serve in a bowl garnished with parsley, red bell pepper, and lemon zest, if desired.
- Add sautéed onion to the beans during the last 30 minutes or so of cooking.
- Pressure cook beans for creamier consistency.
- Serve with corn polenta and homemade pesto.