Soybean

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Differing varieties of soybean from National Soybean Germplasm Collection (USA)

The soybean (U.S.) or soya bean (UK) (Glycine max) is a species of legume native to East Asia. It is an annual plant that has been used in China for 5,000 years as a food and a component of drugs. Soy contains significant amounts of all the essential amino acids for humans, and so is a good source of protein. Soybeans are the primary ingredient in many processed foods, including dairy product substitutes.

Culinary uses

Soybeans can be broadly classified as "vegetable" (garden) or field (oil) types. Vegetable types cook more easily, have a mild nutty flavour, better texture, are larger in size, higher in protein, and lower in oil than field types. Tofu and soymilk producers prefer the higher protein cultivars bred from vegetable soybeans originally brought to the United States in the late 1930s. The "garden" cultivars are generally not suitable for mechanical combine harvesting because they have a tendency for the pods to shatter on reaching maturity.

Immature soybeans may be boiled whole in their green pod and served with salt, under the Japanese name edamame.

In China, Japan, and Korea the beans and products made from the bean are a popular part of the diet. The Chinese invented tofu and also made use of several varieties of soybean paste as seasonings. Japanese foods made from soya include miso, natto, kinako and edamame. In Korean cuisine, soybean sprouts, called kongnamul are also used in a variety of dishes such as doenjang, cheonggukjang and ganjang.

Soybeans are fermented to produce soy sauce (or shoyu), Chinese fermented black beans and Yellow bean paste, processed for oil and flour. Soybeans are used to produce tofu and many other food substitutes.

How much does one cup of soybeans weigh?

Estimated US cup to weight equivalents:

Ingredient US Cups Grams Ounces
Soybeans dry
1
200 grams 7 ounces
Soybeans cooked
1
75 grams 3 ounces

Conversion notes:
Every ingredient has a cups to ounces or grams conversion table. Search for the ingredient, cup to weight conversions are at the end of each ingredient page.

We also have a generic conversion table and a portions per person lookup.


How to cook soya beans in a pressure cooker

Use this basic guide if you do not have a specific recipe

  • Pick through the beans and discard any discoloured beans or loose skins
  • Soak in cold water for a minimum of the time shown, soaking overnight is usually the best way to achieve this
  • Change soaking water a few times if possible
  • Never cook the beans in the water they were soaked in
  • Rinse the beans well at the end of the soaking period
  • Ensure the pressure cooker is at least a quarter full
  • Never fill the pressure cooker more than half full
  • Always cover the beans with at least 5 cm (2") water
  • Add 2 tablespoons of vegetable oil to the water - this reduces foaming
  • Allow the pressure cooker to get to the required pressure and then begin timing
  • Use the specified pressure release method - this is the natural method in the case of dried beans or pulses
  • A bean is usually perfectly cooked when it can be easily squashed between your forefinger and thumb
  • If the beans are not sufficiently cooked, return to pressure, cook for another 3 minutes and allow the pressure to reduce using the natural method.
    Re-check that the beans are cooked to your liking.
BEAN VARIETY COLD WATER SOAK TIME
minimum period
PRESSURE COOKING TIME COOKING PRESSURE
High = 15 psi
Medium = 10 psi
Low = 5 psi
PRESSURE RELEASE METHOD
Soya bean 8 hours 35 minutes High Natural

See also


Find recipes that contain 'Soybean'

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