So, I got home from work tonight and was in the "I'm so hungry I could eat my hand" mood. Familiar with this one? Well, I needed something fast and tasty for dinner, and not soy, since I had soy yogurt with breakfast today and a tofu scramble at about 2:00 this afternoon. (Call it "second lunch." We were at the beach all morning, and all I had for lunch was a peanut butter sandwich, some watermelon, and some canteloupe.) The only leftovers I have right now are tofu-based, so those were out . . . I decided to make a big, green salad and drain and rinse some cannellini beans for the top. Side of guac and chips, and I'm feeling much better now. :)
As I'm eating, I think, "boy, canned beans sure are nice."
See, I haven't bought canned beans in ages. I appreciate them for their convenience -- cooking beans from scratch takes a lot of planning and a lot of time, and sometimes I just don't have the time to do that. This is why I've made the decision to call for canned beans in my cookbook. I realize it's not the best thing, but I figure, I'm attempting to market my cookbook to a wide variety of people -- not just those who cook healthfully already. I think I'd scare off newbies if I told them they had to cook their own beans. (It does take some practice, I've found.) I also figure, foodies who use my cookbook will choose to cook their own beans anyway, so everybody wins, right?
I don't like canned beans because they are mushier and less flavorful than ones I cook myself, and because some brands are very high in sodium (although the brand I buy had no added salt. Awesome!) Also, they are more processed than bulk beans, so they cause more overall waste (although the packaging is fully recyclable.)
Bulk beans taste great and are super eco-friendly, but they are also a hassle. I know you can freeze cooked beans, which I haven't tried doing yet, but since I have such a small fridge and freezer, that's not terribly practical for me right now.
I guess I haven't made up my mind about canned versus bulk beans yet. Any thoughts?