Use this basic recipe to prepare beans for the recipes here. Adding aromatics (such as onion, garlic, and herbs) will flavor the beans and their broth, but leave a neutral flavor for any type of recipe. Kombu (dried kelp) helps reduce beans’ gas-producing properties.
Place beans, optional aromatics, and 8 to 10 cups water in large pot or saucepan, and bring to a boil over medium-high heat. Boil 15 minutes. Reduce heat to medium-low, and simmer pre-soaked beans for 30 minutes; dried beans for 2 hours, or until beans are tender and creamy, adding more water if necessary. Remove aromatics before serving or using beans.