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At first glance, every chick pea looks like every other chick pea. Every lentil and cranberry bean like every other lentil and cranberry bean. But like everything else you might put in your mouth, there are really good ones – and there are not-so-good ones. The difference? Freshness.

“New” beans – especially new heirloom beans – are delicious. Some are meaty, some are kind of creamy. Some are dense, some are quite light. And they all have a lot of flavor. They’re the opposite of the flavorless, mushy beans you find at the grocery – beans that have been drying out for years. Really. Years.

So let’s make some Better Cheaper Slower beans. I got them from Rancho Gordo, probably the best and coolest source of heirloom beans. They’re more expensive than most other beans, but they’re way Cheaper than most other foods. And way, way Cheaper than other protein sources.


Lentil Beans, rice and curried vegetables

All the great stuff is at Rancho Gordo. Cranberry beans. Cannelini beans. Rio Zape Beans. Dozens and dozens of the highest quality beans.

And they’ll tell you about hundreds of things to do with them in their cookbook, Heirloom Beans.


Cannellini Beans in Smoky Tomato Sauce on Creamy Polenta


Rio Zape Bean Salad

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