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Softening Old Hard Beans

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Sometimes old dried beans get so old and hard that it's nearly impossible to get them cooked enough to eat. Not a good thing to have happen if you are depending on those during a food shortage or a fuel shortage. They can use a lot of fuel/energy getting them soft enough to eat in normal times. 


I've always heard baking soda helps to soften them up but I wasn't sure how it's done. This guy, Mr. Tom, shows how he does it. 


Very Old Dry Beans. Can they be made to be Edible Again? - YouTube


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Thank you for that info Jeepers. I am going to check that out when I have more time. Getting ready to go to store shortly. 

euphrasyne, I have used the pressure cooker many times for cooking beans. I like to put them in the slow cooker in early morning and let the cook all day. But the much older beans don't get as tender in there.  I soak my beans overnight but did not know about the baking soda. Will be coming back to watch the video after a bit.

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I use my stove top pressure cooker (not canner) and let it do the cooking just as if I were "canning" beans...90 minutes...10# of pressure.  I never add salt.  Salt will "seal" your beans so they can't absorb moisture (so I was taught).  They always come out perfect.

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I prefer soaking and  crockpot for beans up to 2 years.  Over that, I soak, then pressure cook until done.   They take longer but they get done better in the pressure cooker.  I start them in the morning for 40m.  Then I'll natural release and cook in 10-20m intervals with natural release until they are done to my satisfaction. Sometimes It takes a few times. 

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