Beans were and still are a staple of my family’s foods. But it was strictly pinto beans that I grew up enjoying. It was not until I moved away from home and was cooking for myself, that I tried other bean varieties. My favorite of them all are black beans. I almost want to say that I really think I enjoy them even more than the pinto beans! But, if we are talking about my Mom’s tamales de frijol, then it would still be strictly pinto beans for that recipe. Some dishes are best left as you learned them. For today’s blog post, I share with you a few of my favorite recipes featuring black beans. And whether you cook them from scratch or purchase them canned, they make for a hearty meal, salad or side dish. From salads, salsa’s, soup and chili, black beans are a great addition to your everyday menu. Type black beans in the search bar to find recipe on how to cook beans from scratch.
Black Bean, Queso Fresco and Tomato Salad
1 english cucumber, diced
1 pint grape tomatoes, sliced in half
1 small red bell pepper, diced
1 jalapeno, seeded and minced
1 red fresno, seeded and minced
4 green onions, sliced
3 cloves garlic. minced
14 oz can black beans, drain and rinse
10 oz queso fresco, diced
Juice of 1 lime
1/4 cup red wine vinegar
1/3 to 1/2 cup olive oil
1 to 1 1/2 teaspoons oregano, crushed
Small bunch of cilantro or parsley, chopped fine
salt and fresh cracked pepper to taste
Combine all ingredients. Season to taste. Cover and chill for 1 hour before serving. Serve with tostadas, top with guacamole. Yields 6 to 8 servings.
2 roma tomatoes, diced
1/2 cup onions, diced
1/4 cilantro, chopped
1 serrano pepper, diced
3 ancho peppers, stems and seeds removed
2 tablespoon chicken bouillon granules
1 teaspoon cumin
1 teaspoon oregano
1 teaspoon chicken bouillon granules
1 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon pepper
2 1/2 cups low sodium chicken broth
8 ounce can “El Pato” brand spicy tomato sauce
1/2 cup water
1/4 cup masa harinaFor Garnish
1. Transfer the chile ancho’s to a glass bowl, cover with water and cook in the microwave for 6 minutes. Remove from microwave, stir and let cool slightly.
2. In the blender, combine beans, tomatoes, onions, serrano, cilantro, bouillon, oregano, salt, pepper, 2 1/2 cups chicken broth, and spicy tomato sauce. Drain all the liquid from ancho peppers and add them to the blender. Blend on high until very smooth and well blended. Strain through a fine wire mesh strainer.
3. Heat 1 tablespoon oil in a medium saucepan to medium heat. Add the strained bean soup and bring to a low boil. In a small bowl, combine the masa harina and 1/2 water, whisk until there are no more lumps. Whisk this slurry into the simmering bean sauce. Cook the soup for another 10 to 15 minutes or until it becomes thick. Taste for salt, cover and remove from heat.
4. Serve with tortilla chips, avocado slices, cilantro,and sour cream. Yields 4 servings, as a meal, or 6 as a starter.
Notes: Goya also makes a spicy tomato sauce or you can just use a regular tomato sauce and add a little hot sauce. If you can’t find masa harina, you could blend 2 diced corn tortillas in with the soup ingredients. This will give you that little hint of corn flavor and thicken the soup.
Black Bean, Nopalitos, and Corn Salsa with Queso Fresco…
2 small cans black beans, drained and rinsed
2 ears of fresh corn
1 large jar of cactus, drained and rinsed, and diced
1 large red bell pepper, diced
2 serrano peppers, minced
1 medium red onion, diced
1/3 cup chopped cilantro
Juice of 3 key limes
2 tablespoons vinegar
2 cups queso fresco, crumbled
Salt and pepper
1. After husking the corn, transfer to a plate and cook in the microwave for 2 minutes on each side. Remove from microwave and let cool. Dice the red onion first and transfer it to a bowl with just enough cold water to cover and 2 tablespoons of vinegar. This will deflame the onion, as they call it and give them a nice tang from the vinegar. Set aside while prepping the rest of the ingredients.
2. In a large bowl, combine black beans, cactus, red pepper, serrano, cilantro, lime juice, chile limon powder, 3 tablespoons olive oil, salt and pepper to taste. Remove corn form cob and fold into the salsa. Drain the red onions, and add to the salsa.Taste for salt, transfer salsa to a 13×9 dish and top with queso fresco. Serve with tortilla chips. Yields up to 14 servings. Good for a party.
Note: If you wanted to you could also serve this warm by putting it under the broiler for a few minutes until the cheese melts slightly…yum!
Roasted Poblano Spicy Vegetarian Chili~Loaded with Spices and Flavor!
3 tablespoons olive oil
1 medium sweet onion, diced
3 cloves garlic, minced
2 stalks celery, sliced thin
1 red bell pepper, diced
Salt and pepper to taste
3 roasted poblano peppers, diced
2 to 3 chipotles in adobo, minced (depending on heat level)
1/3 cup cilantro, finely chopped
1 1/2 cups corn
1 1/2 cups chickpeas
2 cups of your favorite cooked beans (I used black beans)
28 ounce can of diced or crushed tomatoes
8 ounces tomato sauce or ketchup (I used spicy ketchup)
4 tablespoons tomato paste
4 tablespoons Worcestershire sauce, optional (please note: W sauce is animal-based, not plant-based)
5 tablespoons your favorite hot sauce (I used Tapatio brand)
4 to 5 tablespoons of chili powder
1 tablespoon smoked paprika
1 tablespoon cumin
1/2 tablespoon garlic powder
1/2 tablespoon onion powder
1/2 tablespoon oregano
6 cups vegetable broth
A few slices of Monterey jack cheese (melted garnish over chili)
1. In a large pot, preheat 3 tablespoons of olive oil to medium heat for a few minutes. Add the onions, garlic, celery and bell pepper. Season lightly with salt and pepper and cook for 6 minutes.
2. Add all of the remaining ingredients in the order listed. Bring to a boil, reduce heat, taste for salt and continue cooking for about 1 hour or until chili becomes thick. Stir now and then, so it does not burn at the bottom. Adjust the seasonings as it cooks down to your taste.
3. Garnish with jack cheese and melt under the broiler. Serve with crema (Mexican sour cream), pickled jalapeño peppers and tortilla chips.
2 cups black beans, drained and rinsed
4 roma tomatoes, diced
1/2 cup red onion, diced
1 to 2 serrano or jalapeño peppers, minced
1 clove garlic, minced
3 tablespoons cilantro
Juice of 1 lime or 2 tablespoons red wine vinegar
2 tablespoons olive oil, optional
Salt and pepper to taste