9 June 2009
Corn, squash, and beans, the Three Sisters. According to Iroquois Indians these crops are inseparable sisters who grow and thrive best together. Native Americans held planting and harvesting ceremonies to honor foods and give thanks for Earth's bounty. Simple things show why these three plants make great companions: corn stalks serve as poles for beans, squash provide shade and cover that retains soil moisture, and beans fix nitrogen into the soil enriching it. Native cultures worldwide enjoyed diets rich in whole grain, beans, and seasonal fruits and vegetables. While fresh produce is delightful around harvest time, field crops such as beans can be enjoyed year round because they store so well. While we are eagerly anticipating summer's harvest, it is possible and wise to enjoy whole grain and beans right now… and throughout the year.
Spring '09 Eden Foods introduced six new boxed dry organic beans: Black Turtle, Dark Red Kidney, Garbanzo, Green Lentils, Navy, and Pinto. All are USA family farm grown by those we know and trust. Because these farmers have been dedicated to growing organically for decades, the soil is vital and yields beans with vibrant nutrition. Eden works directly with the growers to develop and nurture personal, trusted relationships. While foreign supply dominates commercial and the majority of natural, Eden purchasers visit our local farmers regularly, walk the fields, and pay each grower directly for their crops. Supporting USA organic family farms is the best way to ensure food purity and sustainability.
For years Eden canned organic beans have been recognized for their purity, fill, finish, and flavor. The new boxed dry beans measure up to the same standards. Each one pound box is made of recycled, recyclable paperboard and comes with complete cooking instructions and a delicious Easy Eden recipe. Summer is the perfect time to introduce healthy bean dishes in your diet in hot or cold soups, salads, pasta salads, dips and salsas, and so much more. There are many free recipes on our web site.
Many people think cooking dry beans is complicated. It's actually quite simple. First, sort and rinse the beans to remove any foreign material. Next, soak the beans. Lentils are one of the few legumes that don't benefit from soaking. For the others, place in a bowl, cover with about 3 inches of cold water, and soak for 6 to 8 hours or overnight. The bowl may be covered with a light, breathable material such as the EDEN Bamboo Sushi Mat. In the morning drain the beans and rinse again. Use the soaking water to water plants. Bring the beans to a boil in a heavy pot with 3 cups of water for every 1 cup of soaked beans. Simmer for about 1 hour and 15 minutes, adding a touch of EDEN Kombu sea vegetable at the beginning or EDEN Sea Salt near the end of cooking for subtle texture and flavor. The beans may also be pressure cooked by adding 2 to 2 ½ cups of water for every 1 cup of soaked beans. Cooking time will vary based on the type of pressure cooker, so please follow the manufacturer's suggested time for cooking your beans. Each ½ cup of dry beans yields about 1 ½ cups cooked beans.
Beans are extremely versatile. Diets centered around whole grain and beans are nourishing, healthy, and delicious. Beans make excellent main courses, salads, side dishes, and more. We'd be the first to acknowledge that beans are not a glamour food, but they should be. Visit edenfoods.com to learn why and for over 250 tasty, nutritious bean recipes you can enjoy all summer and the year round.
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