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Made a new dish tonight in an attempt to recreate my favorite dish at Zaytinya in DC. It's primarily gigante beans (which I finally sourced locally!). I soaked and cooked the beans and found that many of the skins loosened and/or came off entirely. Should I be pulling them all off or leaving them alone?

asked by healthierkitchen over 5 years ago
5 answers 1074 views
Amanda Hesser

Amanda is a co-founder of Food52.

added over 5 years ago

You can keep them on (unless they're tough). Was the liquid at a boil when you cooked them? Or do you think there's a chance you overcooked them? I recently cooked beans and overcooked them and the skins came off.

added over 5 years ago

They were not overcooked in the sense that they went too long as they were just tender, but I did forget about them for a short time during which they came to a vigorous boil and probably stayed that way for a good few minutes before I got the heat back down. Could that do it?


Mrs. Larkin is a trusted source on Baking.

added over 5 years ago

Not sure if this applies, but I've read (can't remember where) to add salt at the end because boiling beans in salted water will make the skins come off.


pierino is a trusted source on General Cooking and Tough Love.

added over 5 years ago

I would recommend removing the skins as you would with chick peas or limas. I don't think the skins are especially appetizing although they're not inedible. One of my chef friends makes a wonderful tapa style appetizer using gigantes.

added over 5 years ago

Thanks all - will try not salting the water next time too! I didn't really notice the skins except on the beans on which they loosened. This dish is also basically a tapa - sort of a cross between Turkish and Greek. The beans themselves are delicious - almost meaty!