Very Old Beans- Have You Ever Tried Cooking Them?

Guilty as charged. For whatever you want to charge me with. I'm in the midst of a Turkey Chile Verde Soup that I would really like to include some very creamy out-of-the-ordinary beans. My order from Rancho Gordo is pending my new credit card arrival (theft issues). My pantry recesses just yielded EIGHT year old cranberry beans (bob's red mill) and Tongues of Fire. Yes, I know- "try them;what do you have to lose" is also my usual mantra. But then again, maybe some of you have actually tried this and could tell me how yours fared. Plse tell me! And remember, it's just Life-- no shame allowed! Thx very much.

LeBec Fin


mainecook61 January 6, 2016
Beans kept for seed are good for approximately three years. After that, they are fit only for compost and certainly not for eating. I grow my own dry beans (cranberry, black) but in the past I've never had problems with supermarket beans. The worst beans I ever had came from a farmer's market, in a bag tied with a colorful ribbon. Who knows how long they'd been stored? Fresh dried beans (grown and dried last summer) are so nice; they cook up quickly.
foofaraw January 6, 2016
I tried, and it didn't end well. The beans were still hard even with overnight soaking and cook 2x normal time.
ChefJune January 5, 2016
Since they're from Bob's Red Mill, I'd probably give them a 24-hour soak and use them. When one buys beans in a 'regular' grocery store, no telling how many years they've been sitting in the store/warehouse before you buy them. 8 years is possibly below the average length of time, sadly...
Nancy January 5, 2016
This suggestion is not from experience but from logic.
If you go ahead with the very old beans, cook them in a separate pot with only water or broth (and/or whatever tricks people suggest to you).
Then if they cook up soft, wonderful and add them to the Turkey Chile Verde. But if they remain hard or inedible, then you still have the rest of the soup, to serve as is or supplement with other ingredients.
:) And you won't have to pick the individual hard beans from the pot...
LeBec F. January 5, 2016
yep, i'm w/ you, n!
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