I've been cooking a lot of dried beans recently and was impressed with how long they take to become edible. Why do beans need to soak before cooking?
The soaking apparently shortens cooking times, removes toxins in some cases, and preserves nutrients and texture. I suppose it's worth it.
What about rinsing, though? One source said that beans should be rinsed because they're dirty-- any sort of rinsing or washing during processing and packaging might make the beans sprout. The beans passed my personal test of looking clean and smelling clean. Could there be bacteria? Probably, but by now I assume there's bacteria on everything that hasn't come out of an autoclave in the past five minutes. I was eating yogurt while thinking about this, so I decided to think about something else.
I found a small rock mixed in with my pinto beans, which made me think of home. Just like bacteria and yogurt, it's an experience all about context: a crunch fine with hard-shell tacos, but when your rice and beans crunch it's a whole other deal.
One article mentioned pesticides on un-rinsed beans, and I ended up deciding that rinsing beans would be easier than learning about pesticides.