You're planning to use up those dried beans tonight that have been lurking in your pantry for over a year, you did your shopping and have your chili recipe all planned out. You start tossing ingredients on the counter and suddenly realize the beans are still snug in the pantry. You forgot to soak them overnight! What to do? (This is usually me!)
As long as you have at least four hours or so before dinner, there's still time.
Place beans in a pot and cover with twice that amount of water. Cover with a lid, and bring to a boil over high heat; reduce heat as necessary to continue boiling for 1-2 minutes, but not boiling over. Remove from the heat and drain. Replace in the pot or place in your slow-cooker, cover with fresh water, and soak for at least one hour, without heat, and with lid on.
After this soaking period, drain again, cover with more fresh water, and cook for a minimum of 30 minutes (stovetop), or two hours on HIGH (slow-cooker), according to your recipe.