Tuesday, April 26, 2011

Beans and Rice

I've had some questions lately about how I make my beans and rice. So I thought I'd just post the recipe right here!

for the beans:
1 lb. small red beans - dry (or pinquinto beans, if you can find them)
3 c. chicken broth
3-5 c. water

for the sofrito (flavor):
8 oz bacon (1/2 package), chopped
2 Tbs. olive oil (or use bacon drippings)
1 med onion, diced
1 jalapeno seeded, cored, and diced (or 1 can diced green chiles)
1 tsp. cumin
1 tsp. salt

1. soak beans overnight in water to cover
2. when ready to cook, drain soak water and rinse beans (some say changing the water and rinsing the beans helps reduce "gassy effects" that beans are sometimes known to have)
3. Return beans to pot, add water and chicken broth. Bring to boil then reduce to a simmer. Simmer, partially covered, for 1.5-2 hours until beans are soft. (the bag usually gives directions for this part, with some variations) Reduce heat to low.
these are the beans once soft - you can easily pierce them with your fork
Create your "sofrito" :
4. In separate pan, saute bacon until almost crisp. Drain and set aside. Heat 2 tbsp oil over medium high heat. Saute onion and jalapeno until tender (about 5 min.) Add salt, cumin, and garlic. Saute until fragrant (about 30 seconds). Pour 1 1/2 c. cooked beans into this pan with their liquid. If the big bean pot has too much liquid, you can add more to the small pan.  Mash beans with a potato masher. Return bacon to pan. Reduce heat to low. Stir for a few minutes to let flavors blend.
the sofrito mixture.  add more liquid from the beans if it starts getting too dry.
5. Add all to big bean pot.  Stir and heat on low for 5-15 more minutes.
6.  Serve over rice!  

It sounds time consuming, but you can put the beans on to cook at around 3 and just check them once in a while.  About 15-30 minutes before they're done, start the bacon.  The whole sofrito takes about 15-30 minutes, and you can be prepping your rice and salad while you wait.  Start your beans cooking at 3 or 3:30 and dinner will be ready at 5:30!

You can really use lots of different meats for these.  I particularly like using little smokies sausages, but usually I do bacon.  Sometimes I've done smoked sausage, and that's good too.  A word of advice, don't use sweet italian sausage.  It gives the beans a very ambiguous, "mexican or italian?" taste.  I might have done that once.  But I'm not confessing here.


Alisha said...

Thanks for the recipe. : )

Lacey said...

I didn't realize you had just made beans and rice! I will have to give this recipe a try.

Christy said...

Alisha - no problem! It's easier than it looks!

Lacey - it's not the "official" red beans and rice - but it is a variation of beans that Margie cooks! :)

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