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I have only made a few stews on my slow cooker so I want to try a different recipe. I want to try cooking cranberry/cargamanto beans for a bandeja paisa (similar to a Brazilian feijoada) on a slow cooker instead of a pressure cooker. Basically, I want to replicate the traditional method of cooking the beans on low heat (open fire) in a clay pot using a slow cooker.

The pressure cooker recipe recommends to pressure-cook the beans for 30 minutes before adding the remaining ingredients (plantains, carrots, pork) and then pressure-cook everything for 20 more minutes.

Could I add all the ingredients at once in a slow cooker and set it on low for a long cooking period (8 hours)? Or should I cook the the beans for a while before adding the rest of the ingredients?

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3 Answers 3

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I've generally had success cooking dried beans in a slow cooker for about 5 hours on high with plenty of water (about 4 c. per 1 lb of beans). While you COULD add everything at once, I wouldn't recommend it, as the rest of your vegetables will become mushy and grainy.

For that exact recipe, I'd cook the beans in the slow cooker, than combine everything on the stovetop for about 45 minutes to get the flavors to combine.

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When converting pressure cooker to slow cooker recipes like that (or vice versa) I find that maintaining those different cooking times is often important, otherwise you end up over cooking things. Now some things that's not a problem with... if you want them to cook into mush and just dissolve away into the dish, then yeah, throw them in early.

In this particular case it looks like they're first cooking the dried beans a bit over half way, then building the sauce/gravy they are served in while doing the second half of the cooking. You will probably be able to get away with throwing it all in early if you want those other ingredients to just work into the sauce and not stand out as separate elements.

(btw, note that you got the times backwards on that... at least relative to the recipe you linked to... the beans cook for 30 min alone, then 20 min with the seasonings.)

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Thanks - I corrected the cooking times for the pressure cooker recipe. –  Jaime Soto Nov 2 '10 at 21:18

I soak my beans 24 to 30 hours then slow cook in a clay pot in the oven, that the best taste you can get out of the beans.

Claybourg.com sells great beans pots, unglazed and glazed see at these links if you needed

http://www.claybourg.com/Clay-Faitouts,-stew-pots,-bean-pots,-serving-dishes/c24/index.html

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Thanks for the link. I have a few questions about your method. At what temperature and for how long do you cook the beans? Do you cook just the beans or do you add other ingredients (carrots, plantains, pork)? If so, do you add all the ingredients at once or do you cook the beans for a while before adding the rest? –  Jaime Soto Nov 4 '10 at 21:58

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