Have you noticed how the world is filled with stupid arbitrary rules? I don't mean practical moral precepts, which are eminently useful. I'm talking about things people tell you to do which serve no purpose whatsoever. Cooking is rife with examples. People do things one way, it gets repeated a million times, then everyone thinks it's inviolable law. Perhaps no other food is so subject to the whim of arbitrary rules than beans. I've written some of these stupid rules myself. And this story just goes to show, such rules were meant to be broken. I got home last night with this brand new iron olla from The Spanish Table, and wanted to try it out so badly, that I just chucked in some dry red beans, water, salt, and a touch of oregano, and threw it on the fire. Not this fire, I mean in the fireplace fire. And left it there, until morning. Reheated it up and the beans were perfect, intact, and yet cooked through. Succulent, perfectly seasoned. And broke every rule about how beans ought to be cooked. Let me know if you have a similar rule-breaking story.