*A “charro” is a Mexican cowboy. The flavorful beans are delicious served with baked chips, or over cooked rice (such as Yellow Rice, see recipe below) or baked or mashed potatoes.
Yield: Approximately 6 cups each black beans and rice
1 teaspoon light olive oil
1 onion, chopped
1 to 1 1/2 teaspoons minced garlic (2 large cloves)
4 (15-ounce) black beans, rinsed and drained (divided use; can substitute pinto beans)
2 cups water (divided use; this time, I used ONE cup water, plus the liquid off the canned tomatoes, which was also about 1 cup)
1 Tablespoon chopped pickled jalapeño peppers (optional; to taste)
1 teaspoon chili powder
1/2 teaspoon ground cumin
1/4 teaspoon dried oregano
1 tomato, chopped (I substituted one 15-ounce can whole tomatoes, chopped; might also want to use zesty diced tomatoes with green chilies for a spicier dish)
1 whole green onion, finely chopped
2 Tablespoons minced fresh cilantro
1 teaspoon lime juice
1/2 teaspoon salt (or to taste)
1 Tablespoon light olive oil
1/4 cup finely chopped onion (or 1 Tablespoon dried chopped onion)
1 packet Sazon Goya (look for it in the international foods section, with the Latino products; this is what turns the rice a beautiful color)
1/2 teaspoon dried cumin
1/2 teaspoon dried oregano
6 cups COOKED AND CHILLED brown or white rice (I use brown, of course - you may use cooked and chilled instant rice, if desired)
To make the Charro Beans:
Drizzle the 1 teaspoon of olive oil into the bottom of a medium-large saucepan, then brush or tip saucepan to until the bottom is coated; preheat over medium-hight heat.
Sauté the onion in the preheated saucepan for 8 to 10 minutes, or until just beginning to turn golden.
Stir in the garlic, jalapeno pepper (if using), chili powder, cumin, oregano, then continue sautéing for 2 minutes.
Stir THREE of the four cans of beans, ONE cup of the water into the saucepan, bring to a boil; reduce the heat to medium-low, stirring often, then simmer while preparing the other ingredients.
In a blender or food processor, combine the remaining 1 can of beans and 1 cup of water (or the juice drained from the canned tomatoes, then blend or process until smooth.
Stir the puréed beans mixture and sliced green onion into the saucepan; bring the beans back to a boil over medium-high heat, stirring often, then reduce the heat to medium-low and simmer for 10 minutes, stirring occasionally.
(The puréed beans will thicken the broth and make it look like it has simmered for hours instead of minutes)!
Shortly before serving, stir in the cilantro, lime juice, and salt to taste; simmer a few more minutes to meld flavors.
To make the Yellow Rice:
While the beans simmer, in a large skillet, heat the 1 Tablespoon of olive oil over medium-high heat.
Sauté the onion over medium-high heat until just before it begins to turn golden. (If using dried onions, just sauté until aromatic).
Stir in the Sazon Goya, cumin and oregano.
Fold in the rice until the color is evenly distributed.
Sauté, turning occasionally, allowing the rice to JUST begin to lightly brown in spots.
To serve (may also be served separately):
Spoon a serving of Yellow Rice onto an individual plate or bowl, top with an approximately equal amount of Charro Beans.