Items you will need
- Digestive enzyme
White beans and ham is a warming dish full of protein and fiber, but the after effects of eating this can be embarrassing. There are steps to take to "de-gas" your bean dishes. These must be done during the preparation of the dish, as there is no way to remove the gas once the meal has been cooked. Gas results because the body cannot digest the long sugar molecules called oligosaccarides in the beans and the bacteria in the intestine feed on them instead. There are some steps you can take to reduce the sugar molecules and have a less gassy bean and ham dish.
Soak dried white beans in water for 10 hours at room temperature or for one hour in boiling water. This step begins to dissolve some of the oligosaccharides and it reduces the final cooking time.
Drain the soaked white beans and rinse them under running water to wash away many of the oligosaccharides.
Cook the white beans in fresh water and add the ham according to your recipe.
Take a digestive enzyme such as Beano just before eating the white beans and ham. These over-the-counter products are readily available and can help your digestive system deal with the oligosaccharides in the beans.
- "Cookwise"; Shirley O. Corriher; 1997
- "The Science of Good Food"; David Joachim and Andrew Schloss; 2008
- University of Nebraska Extension: Cooking with Dry Beans
- ham bone bean soup and spoon. image by James Insogna from Fotolia.com