November 2, 2023

Llano Seco Dry Beans

Rancho Llano Seco
Now that we’re headed into soup and chili season, it’s a great time to talk about beans. We’re happy to share dry beans from our farming partner Rancho Llano Seco who raises heirloom beans for their rich flavor, texture and history. Heirloom vegetables are old time varieties that are known for their flavor and nutritional value, but tend to have a lower yield and can be much more difficult to grow.

Rancho Llano Seco
Known for raising heirloom crops and meat, Rancho Llano Seco was incorporated in 1861 and means dry plain in Spanish, for the dry land wheat fields that have long been a part of the farm’s heritage. The ranch has been in Charlie Thieriot’s family for six generations and sits between the Sacramento River and Chico Creek, including their various sloughs and oxbows. The Rancho has two oxbow lakes due to its proximity to the Sacramento River.
Rancho Llano Seco
Wintu, Maidu, and Yana tribes were the original caretakers of this area and it is with great respect that Rancho Llano Seco carries on their traditions with an approach that encourages symbiosis between the cultivated fields, untouched waterways, and wilderness corridors. Most of the Rancho’s acreage is also in conservation or agriculture easements and they work to restore native grasslands, wetlands, oak savannas and riparian forests on the property.
Rancho Llano Seco
With over 150 years of experience cultivating legumes and cereals, they apply their experience and knowledge to growing older varieties of beans and grains, ensuring that heirlooms continue to be available for those eaters who put a premium on flavor over price. While dry beans are tastiest cooked within weeks of harvest, you can store Llano Seco beans in airtight containers in a cool, dry place that is not in direct sunlight for many months.
Rancho Llano Seco
To cook with dry beans, a general rule of thumb is that one pound of dried beans will yield about 6 cups of cooked beans. Also, cooked beans freeze beautifully! When you are ready to prepare, sort through the beans to remove any residual plant material or dirt particles and then rinse. Cover beans by at least 3 inches of cold water and soak 4-6 hours or overnight. Drain the beans and refrigerate if not using immediately.

When you are ready to cook them, place soaked beans in a large pot and fill with cold water. Bring to a boil, skim and discard any foam that rises to the surface and lower to a simmer and cook for 1-2 hours, depending on the size of the bean and desired tenderness. Add more water, if needed, to keep beans covered. Gentle simmering keeps the texture of the beans creamy and ensures that their skins don’t break. To accentuate their flavor, add a teaspoon or more of salt when the beans have begun to soften, about halfway through cooking.
Rancho Llano Seco
To get you started here is a simple but tasty recipe that works with many varieties of dry beans. You can also search our recipes for a delicious ways to add beans to your meals, from side dish to main course.

Cool Weather Comfort Beans

    16oz Jacob’s Cattle Beans, presoaked
    3 Tbsp avocado or sunflower seed oil
    1 medium onion, finely chopped
    1-3 jalapeño peppers
    1 sprig thyme or bay leaf
    Kosher salt

Heat oil in a pot over med-high heat. Add onion and cook until caramelized, 8–10 minutes.
Meanwhile, char jalapeño in a dry skillet over high heat, turning occasionally, until blackened, 8–10 minutes; slit the jalapeños and remove seeds, if desired.
Add jalapeño, bay or thyme, and beans to the pot; add water or broth to cover by 2 inches. Simmer, partially covered, until beans are creamy, approx. 2 hours. Season with salt partway through cooking. Remove bay leaf and serve warm.

How To Add Farm Stand Products to Your Delivery:
CSA members - head on over to our online Farm Stand Market to customize your upcoming delivery. Market is open from noon on Thursday until 6 pm, 2 days before your scheduled delivery day. After you confirm your produce items, click the orange button "Confirm and Continue To Other Farm Products" to add the products to your delivery.

Not part of our farm family? Find out if we deliver to your neighborhood. You can even get your whole office in on the fun with our office snack packs. Find more information about our office deliveries here.