Add beans, onion, garlic, and kombu to a pot and cover with 3 inches water/vegetable broth. We went with a ratio of about 2/3 water and 1/3 vegetable broth for a little flavor.
Season beans to taste at this time. We added salt, cumin powder, and chipotle peppers in adobo sauce. Then increase heat to medium/medium-high (the beans should be bubbling) and cook - stirring occasionally (uncovered) - for 10-15 more minutes. The liquid should evaporate a bit more.
*1 pound dried beans typically equals 2 cups dried or 4-5 cups cooked beans.
*We didn't find soaking necessary for texture and flavor. But if you'd like to soak the beans for improved digestibility, soak overnight in cool water, or for 6 hours. Then drain and proceed with recipe as instructed.
*Don't worry - you can't taste the kombu in the beans. It's just there to help improve digestibility.
*As the recipe is written, we used a ratio of 2/3 water + 1/3 vegetable broth.
*Method adopted from the talented folks at Serious Eats.
*Nutrition information is a rough estimate for 1 half-cup serving calculated without optional add-ins.