Bean cooking Q&A with Alexis deBoschnek
Cookbook author, trained chef, recipe developer, and video host, Alexis deBoschnek is the authority when it comes to cooking resourcefully, seasonally, and deliciously, so we were thrilled to chat with her about how she likes to cook beans. You might already know Alexis from her cookbook To the Last Bite, which debuted last year, featuring simple and stunning recipes from her kitchen in the Catskills Mountains.
Q: What's your cooking vessel preference?
A: You want something big enough to add enough liquid to properly cook the beans, as well as a pot large enough to add all your aromatics. My go-to is my Le Creuset Dutch oven.
Q: Do you soak?
A: This is controversial, but I've found that it does make a difference in the length of cooking time – and I like the ritual of soaking them the night before.
Q: What are your favorite aromatics?
A: The joy of a pot of beans is that there are so many ways to change the flavor and make it your own. Some of my go-to aromatics include a charred lemon, herbs, whole chilies, and a rind of Parmigiano-Reggiano.
Q: What are your favorite brothy beans toppings?
A: I'm in camp creamy all the way – sour cream, a dollop of ricotta, or even yogurt. Add some crispy shallots on top and tender herbs and you've got a perfect meal.
Q: What are your favorite quick things to do with cooked beans?
A: I love having beans in the fridge ready to be added to breakfast tacos or rice bowls in the morning.
Q: What's your favorite way to serve or enjoy beans?
A: I love having a pot of beans for simple meals at home like rice and beans, or at dinner parties when we put a whole spread of food out. I find that they're always the unsuspecting star of the show!