Anasazi Beans

Uncooked Anasazi Beans.
Anasazi beans are a tasty alternative to the ubiquitous pinto bean. The uncooked beans are a gorgeous pinks and white, and they cook into a mild pink color.

These beans have only been available for the general consumer since 1983, but they are becoming more popular because of their mild, delicious flavor. It may not be a delicate thing to mention, but compared to pinto beans, Anasazi Beans have 75% less gas-causing carbohydrates. So give these a try!

The term "Anasazi" is a Navajo term for the ancient ones, or those who lived in the Southwestern United States from 500-1300 AD. Anasazi beans were reportedly found around 1950 in ancient cliff dwellings in the Four Corners region of the United States. Anasazi Beans are likely to have been continuously grown by Native Americans for thousands of years. But the best thing about Anasazi Beans is that these beans are delicious.

If your local stores don't carry Anasazi beans, I would recommend buying some online. There are many sources with good prices. The flavor of the beans is amazingly mild and delicious. This recipe can be made with any type of bean, however, and will still taste great.

Anasazi Beans 
2 cups anasazi beans (or any type of dry beans), sorted and washed (1 lb. Anasazi beans = about 2 cups)
2 tsp. granulated garlic powder
1 tsp. parsley
1 tsp. dried basil
1 tsp. cumin
1/2 tsp. dried oregano
1/2 tsp. dried cilantro
1/4 tsp. cumin seeds
1/4 tsp. crushed red pepper
6 cups water
6 bouillon cubes, either chicken or beef
2 tsp. crystallized ginger, chopped

If you don't have a pressure cooker, you need to soak the beans before you cook them. You can see a chart and instructions for cooking beans in a pot here.

Rinse the beans well, sorting out any bad beans, checking for dirt or rocks. I rinse my beans while stirring them with my hand for several minutes, shake the water off, and then let them finish draining over a clean paper towel. If there is a little dirt puddle on the paper towel under the colander after a few minutes, I rinse the beans even longer until they are very clean.

Dump the beans into your pressure cooker. Add all the spices. 

 Add the water and bouillon cubes to the pot of beans. Stir the beans a bit. Dice the ginger into small pieces and add it to the beans. The ginger is a natural digestive that reduces the gas-producing effects of beans.  You can substitute 1/8 tsp. ground ginger for the crystallized ginger.

Follow the directions for cooking beans in your pressure cooker. If you don't have a pressure cooker, use the directions from this post with instructions for cooking beans. Keep in mind that Anasazi beans tend to cook a little faster than most other types of beans.

Taste your beans to make sure they are completely cooked. If you want to refrigerate or freeze them at this point, dump the beans and the liquid into a container for the fridge, and drain the liquid off to serve the beans.

To serve them immediately, drain the liquid, and serve the beans. You can use the Anasazi beans in place of canned beans for any recipe. They taste much better than beans from a can.


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