A couple of months ago, in my desperation for heat, think chillies, not sunshine, I had been craving chilli con carne mind you I am fussy about my chilli, it needs to be dryish not sloppy. 

In England every supermarket has red kidney beans in varying sizes of tins, cooked and ready to go. In rural Andalucía it is not quite so nevertheless I did find dried kidney beans and it is a simple task to soak them overnight then hard boil for an hour. This gets rid of the toxins and soften the beans up. I decided to soak the whole 1kg bag on the basis that I would freeze the remainder. Which I did.

In early February when Andalucía was having its rainy season the chilli con carne crave came along and of course I had red kidney beans in the freezer. ..

It was a bad day as I unwittingly tried to poison myself.

A chilli, like a curry always tastes better the next day so I prepared and cooked mine with the intention of adding the kidney beans when I was ready to re-heat it. After all I didn’t want mushy beans thank you.

About one third of the way through eating my rather hot chilli I started to notice that the beans were a little on the crunchy side. Two thirds of the way through the penny dropped, I rushed into the kitchen to find the freezer bag which I had clearly labelled: “Soaked kidney beans – NOT boiled.”

A quick check on Google predicted that I would be violently sick within 2 to 3 hours. And I was for the next 48 hours.

So five months later I have tasted my first kidney bean since I tried to kill myself. It tasted good in a tuna and bean salad but this time they were from a pre-cooked jar I stumbled across at the supermarket.

I enjoyed my red kidney beans so much they even made an appearance for supper.