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Old 08-28-2007, 12:48 PM   #11
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whatever you do, don't ever salt beans before they are done cooking because the same thing will happen that happened to your corn---I guess we all learn lessons---this was a full pot of beans and I was in tears---now I know better
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Old 08-28-2007, 01:09 PM   #12
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Originally Posted by expatgirl View Post
whatever you do, don't ever salt beans before they are done cooking because the same thing will happen that happened to your corn---I guess we all learn lessons---this was a full pot of beans and I was in tears---now I know better
Sorry but that, too is a wives tale. There's nothing wrong with salting beans. They'll taste a lot better if you do. Most chefs recommend it, in fact.

Old beans are the likely problem if they won't soften. Also acid and hard water inhibit softening, but salt does not.
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Old 08-28-2007, 01:47 PM   #13
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I salt beans but not until almost the end of the cooking-----and you're absolutely right, Jennyema, if the beans are old and dried out no amount of cooking is going to resurrect them. Case in point---I cooked some pinto beans nearly 6 hours the other evening and finally thru them in the trash out of frustration---they never did soften up. Unfortunately, as far as I can tell they don't date beans, do they? I really wished they would.
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Old 08-28-2007, 02:03 PM   #14
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I have seen dates on some bags of beans ... can't remember which brand, though. I use Goya (which I don't think has dates) and buy at places with high turnover.

I made a batch of baked beans 2 weekends ago by request for a family gathering (they had loved the beans I had made a while back) and forgot to put in the salt till a bit more than halfway through the cooking. Boy what a mistake! They were like night and day compared to the beans salted from the beginning. They were dull and didn't have nearly the depth of flavor of the previous batch. The only thing different was the salt. I nearly cried. But I had a beer and a deep breath and then decided to cook them for longer after adding the salt and luckily I cooked them 2 days beforehand and they improved somewhat in the fridge.

I have always salted my beans and only once or twice have I had a problem and one of those times I cooked them with wine and tomatoes.
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Old 08-28-2007, 02:05 PM   #15
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I had a few ears of corn from my neighbors garden. The first few, I actually just sliced off the kernels and put them raw in some salads. It was fresh, juicy, all was well.

Tonight I thought I would boil it, because I had it for a few days and thought it would benefit from some cooking. Too bad I screwed it up. You might be thinking, how in the world could anyone screw up corn.... I thought I would post this so nobody else would ruin their corn. I filled a pot with water, then put a lot of salt in it, brought it to a boil, put the corn in, cooked it for about 5 minutes. When I took it out it, it was really tough. So I did a quick search on how to cook corn. I should have done that to begin with. Salt was the culprit.

Mental note - don't salt the water when you cook corn.
Healthy, sorry to hear it didn't turn out well - tough. Don't think the salted water had anything to do with, imho. I think your cooking time was too short. I'm a city girl, and don't have the luxary of picking fresh corn from the garden, but do have the freshest veggies available in farmer's markets and the 'super' market. If you are boiling the corn, imo/experience, it needs longer cooking time - 10-sometimes 15 minutes - depending on if you added the corn when the water came to a full boil. (I used to add a pinch of sugar - but not always necessary.)

One of the bestest ways I've had corn on the cob, is to add a little butter - or not - wrap the corn in waxed paper (give it a twist on both ends) and nuke it. Hope that helps.
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Old 08-29-2007, 06:02 AM   #16
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Aging and refrigeration seem to contribute to the deterioration of corn's quality. With respect the above discussed bean matter, assuming they're dried beans, an overnight soak should help.
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Old 08-29-2007, 07:46 AM   #17
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My microwave is used almost exclusively for corn.
Steaming fresh ears, and popping those lovely bags of kernals and chemical.
I think microwaves were a gift from the corn god...
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Old 08-29-2007, 09:37 PM   #18
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I never thought to use wax paper in the microwave...cool, thanks for that :)
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Old 08-29-2007, 11:40 PM   #19
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If you have a lot of corn on hand and don't want to refrigerate them as I agree with justplainbill that they deteriorate in the fridge, you can parboil them and freeze them. When we lived overseas they had the most wonderful sweet corn but only available for about 3 weeks in early June--that's it. ZIP...nada for the rest of the year. So that's how we preserved them and were able to serve them at Thanksgiving along with the disastrous green turkey I had one year. :)
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Old 08-29-2007, 11:49 PM   #20
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When I was a kid I raised enough sweet corn to buy all of my books for high school and 2/3 of my collage. and we all ways boiled it in salted water. all ways fresh right out of the patch only minutes from picking. old corn is the culprit
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