First thing that I do at work

Is to quickly throw some beans on. Why? Because hummus needs to happen, and frequently. And since chickpeas can take a long time to cook, it's important that I have a fair bit of them ready for me to use at any minute. However, how do you get it done when you forgot to soak them over night? Two things. Quick soak, and crock pot.

I've found that the beans will soak very quickly if soaked in boiling water before cooking. So what does this mean for crock pot cooking? Throw your beans (chickpeas in this case) into a metal pot, and fill it with three times as much water as beans. Crank up the stove to high heat, and let it come to a full, rushing boil. Turn off the stove. Dump the whole business into a crock pot. Turn on the crock pot to high. You'll have perfectly cooked chickpeas in three hours flat, while you're off doing other things.

What this means for you at home is that those slow cooker dealies are worth their weight in gold. The more you use it for things like beans and the like, the more you realise that spending the money on the tinned product is not only inefficient, but needlessly expensive. In fact, if you want to really talk about making it easy, soak them over night in cold water, and throw them in the crock pot and set it to low before you walk out the day for work. You come home to perfectly cooked beans that are ready to puree into hummus, ready to make into a curry, ready to roll into a soup, ready ready ready.
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