The Magical Fruit

Once summer my mom and my aunt were on a health kick and they planned to make a 9-bean salad. My cousin and I tried to think of nine beans: pinto, black beans, kidney beans. We included both coffee and jelly beans but never came close to naming nine beans.

If you stop by the Rancho Gordo stand at the Saturday farmers market, you’ll learn that there are way more than nine beans out there. There are goats eye, borlotti, yellow Indian woman, cannellini, marrow, Vallarta. There’s a basket of these different varieties available for you to run your hands through as if you were Amelie, and when you’re wrist deep in beans, you might just start to feel excited about cooking a pot of beans.

I know what you’re thinking: cooking a pot of beans is up there with weaving your own rugs. I thought so too. And beans do take time, just not as much time as you think (FRESH dried beans don’t need to be soaked more than a few hours) and they are so worth it.

But like Lavar Burton says, you don’t have to take my word for it. The descriptions of Rancho Gordo beans initially sparked our interest (that, and the unexpected joy running my hands through the basket of multi-colored dried beans): some are said to have a chocolate-y taste, others a coffee-like aroma.

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Photo from http://www.ranchogordo.com 

My mom sounded appalled when I mentioned that we’d had a wonderful meal of beans. “We cooked beans when we were truly poor,” she said. She was probably already picturing me hauling out a loom and starting to weave a rug in my living room. But when she came into town, we cooked up a pot of Goat’s Eye beans and she was quickly converted.

I put a sack of Rancho Gordo beans in her stocking this last Christmas. This past weekend, she left the farmers market with 4 lbs of beans stashed in her bag. That’s how we feel about these beans.

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One Response to “The Magical Fruit”

  1. Cool As A Cucumber In A Bowl Of Hot Sauce « Whole Hog Says:

    […] Rancho Gordo’s magical beans […]

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