Last year one of my goals was to focus on making more homemade and made from scratch treats, snacks, jam, pickles, bread spice blends, sauces, salad dressings, syrups, etc. This was something I already did on a fairly regular basis, but I wanted to reduce the amount of processed food in my diet. Not only that, homemade just tastes so much better and is usually cheaper than store bought.
Over the course of the year I converted almost completely to homemade broths and stocks, make most of my own spice blends and syrup, and homemade hummus is a common snack in our fridge.
One of the things I have slowly tried to completely convert to is omitting canned beans and using dry. This is not to say I don’t have several cans of different beans in my pantry, for quick meals and emergencies; but for the most part I have been going the dried bean route.
Yes, with dried beans you do have to plan ahead some for soaking and longer cooking times; but the price can’t be beat! Almost three to four times the amount of dried beans in one standard package to the amount in canned for the same price. Plus you don’t have to worry about any additives, like sodium, in the dried variety.
Today I share with you a great vegetarian side dish or main dish using dried beans. This is a hearty flavorful bean dish that could be served over rice or wrapped in a tortilla for a main meal or as the side to enchiladas, tacos, etc.
Cooking with dried beans scare you? Fear not, tomorrow I am sharing some in-depth tips and tricks to using this humble and cheap grocery store find!
One Year Ago: Healthy Cooking Tips for the New Year
Two Years Ago: Favorite Recipes of 2010
Three Years Ago: Savory Biscotti
Prep Time: 15 minutes Wait Time: 1-2 hours Cook Time: 1 hour 30 minutes Serves: 4-6
2 cups dry pinto beans
4 cups reduced sodium chicken or vegetable broth
2 celery ribs, diced
½ small onion, chopped
½ large green bell pepper
1 teaspoon ground cumin
½ teaspoon chili powder
2 bay leaves
2 garlic cloves, minced
1 (14.5 ounce) cans Mexican diced tomatoes
1/2 teaspoon salt and black pepper
2 tablespoons minced fresh cilantro
Place beans in a large pot; add water to cover by 2 inches. Bring to a boil; boil for 2 minutes. Remove from the heat; cover and let stand for 1-2 hours. Drain and rinse beans, discarding liquid.
Return beans to the pan. Add broth and bring to a boil. Reduce heat; simmer, uncovered, for 1 hour or until beans are tender.
Stir in celery, onion, green pepper, cumin, chili powder, bay leaves, garlic and tomatoes. Simmer, uncovered, for 30 minutes or until heated through and vegetables are tender.
Discard bay leaves; season with salt and pepper and sprinkle with cilantro before serving.
Adapted from Food on the Table