7 Ways with Beans or How to Survive an Economic Downturn

February 11th, 2009 by Jane

I am remaining positive about our country’s ability to turn around the economic situation, but in the meantime, I am cutting back and making do where I can. When my parents were newlyweds without much money and living near the Gulf Coast, they would cook inexpensive meals using shrimp or beans. Well, things have changed and shrimp is not that cheap any more, but beans are still a great way to make an inexpensive and nutritious meal. One of my friends serves bean tacos to her family when it is the end of the month and she is at the end of her budget. I love beans and I’ve done a little research to expand my repertoire. Try a few of these and watch your dollar stretch!

1. Cooking Tips
Try these cooking tips to insure your beans do not turn out tough! Try the fast soak method or make them in a crock pot.

2. Salad
This white bean and tuna salad is quick and low in calories. Pile it on top of your favorite salad greens for a filling meal. Try quick-cooking lentils or an updated cobb salad for a main dish.

3. Soup
Republicans and Democrats on the Hill all agree that Senate Bean Soup is delicious.  This yummy bean soup is on the menu everyday in the Senate’s restaurant. 

4. Chili
I love this recipe for vegetarian chili from the creative minds behind the Moosewood cookbooks. Even meat-lovers enjoy this hearty mix of red beans and veggies. To feed a crowd, try this beef and bean chili from Emeril Lagasse and take it up a notch! Or a white chili from Paula Deen, might be just what you need on a cold evening.

5. Burgers
No need to purchase pre-made vegetarian burgers when making them is this easy. Or try making falafel from this video tutorial and skip the take-out stop.

6. Casseroles
Whether you go Italian, Mexican or just plain and simple, beans are a great addition to a casserole for your main dish. 

7. The Magical Fruit
Worried about unpleasant side effects from eating more beans?  If you make sure to rinse canned beans before you use them and do not cook dry beans in the water in which you soaked them, then you should be fine. Or you can use the tried and true remedy: beano. for more information on the versatile bean, go to the U. S. Bean Board!

One Response to “7 Ways with Beans or How to Survive an Economic Downturn”

  1. Woody Bombay Says:

    I’m sorry, but unless you’re serving twenty or more people and need to stretch your recipe, putting beans in a meat chili is an abomination.

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