Black soybeans have a lovely color and firm texture that shines in bean salads and are a wonderful addition to pressure cooked brown rice and beans, especially if you add a little sweet brown rice and chestnuts.
Most of the time I get my organic black soybeans from Natural Import Company. They carry both U.S. grown and Hokkaido black soybeans. You can also find them on other sites by doing a quick search. I have seen non-organic ones at asian markets, but I prefer to buy organically grown. Eden Foods sells them canned, but my experience has been that home cooked beans taste a lot better than canned.
Black soybeans also take longer to cook than most other beans, so I usually use a pressure cooker for mine. If you prefer to boil yours, they may take as long as 2-3 hours to get soft enough so make sure you leave enough time. I love the idea of beans simmering all day on the stove, but it’s rare that I am actually home all day to watch them. I hesitate to use a crock pots for beans because I sometimes wonder about digestibility, but try it if you want and let me know how they turn out.
Black Soybeans with Dried Shiitake Mushrooms
1 cup black soybeans, rinsed, sorted and soaked in water for at least 8 hours
postage stamp size piece of kombu
3-4 dried shiitake mushrooms, soaked 20 minutes, reserve soaking liquid
1/2 medium onion, diced
1 stalk celery, diced
1 medium carrot, large dice
unpasteurized shoyu or gluten-free tamari
1/4 to 1/2 cup chopped parsley
1. Drain the soybeans and place in medium-sized pressure cooker. Pour in fresh water to cover by 1 inch. Bring to a boil on medium heat and scrape off any foam that rises to the surface. Add the kombu. Place lid on and bring to pressure. Reduce heat to the lowest you can while still maintaining pressure. Cook for 50 minutes. Remove from heat and let pressure come down naturally.
2. Remove the tough stems from the shiitake mushrooms and discard. Cut the rest into bite size pieces.
3. In a large saucepan or medium dutch oven layer the onion, mushrooms, celery and carrot in that order. Strain the beans, reserving the cooking liquid. Carefully pour the beans on top of the vegetables, taking care to not disturb the layers. Pour the liquid into the pot, pouring down the side of the pan and not into the center.
4. Place on medium heat and bring to a boil. Turn the heat to simmer and cover. Let cook without stirring until the vegetables are tender. If you need to add more liquid at any point, add the reserved mushroom soaking liquid.
5. Add 2-3 tsp of shoyu or to taste. Stir and let simmer uncovered for at least 5 more minutes.
6. Add parsley at the very end of cooking time or as a garnish.