PONY'TUDE Gets Cooking - Black Beans and Rice
Beans and rice is a staple dinner in our house. It's cheap, it's easy, it's filling, it's nutritious, and it makes a LOT of food, so you can take the leftovers to work for lunch. You can also use this dish as a side, but I find it's a great one-pot-wonder meal in itself after a long day at the barn. My recipe takes things up a notch from just dumping a can of beans on some rice!
Black Beans and Rice
2 15oz Cans Black Beans
2 c Brown Rice, Uncooked
1 8 oz Ham Steak
1 Large Green Bell Pepper
1 Medium Onion
3 Cloves Garlic
2 T Tomato Paste
Cook the rice according to package directions, and set aside. While the rice is cooking, get started on your delicious, delicious beans.
Cube the ham into small bite-sized pieces. If I had leftover ham from off the bone, I'd use that. If you're a vegetarian, just skip this part! This dish is easily modified for those who don't eat meat.
Dice the pepper and onion, mince or crush the garlic, and add the veggies and ham to a large pot or deep skillet along with a few glugs of olive oil. Cook over medium heat until the onion and pepper are soft and the ham chunks are starting to brown. At this point in time, it will start to smell really, REALLY good.
Next, add the beans. Don't rise or drain them, though! Keep that wonderful bean juice - it will make the finished product delicious and exciting. Add in the tomato paste for a little richness and color, a generous amount of oregano (sorry, I don't measure these things!), a few dashes of cayenne, and salt to taste. I find that the bean mixture needs a good bit of salt, so don't be afraid to taste and then add more if it seems a little bland to you.
|I don't mess around with the oregano.|
The bean juice should make the mixture look like a thick soup - if it looks a little dry, just add some water. Allow the beans to simmer over medium-low heat for 20 minutes so the flavors all combine.
Once the beans are done cooking, just add the rice to the pot and stir. You're done! How easy was that?! Serve yourself up a big bowl, add hot sauce if that's your thing, and dig in!