Sunday, Aug. 20, 2006
My plea to my three loyal readers to rescue me from the horrors of the cardboardliscious recipes I've been finding for beans and lentils on healthy eating sites has not fallen on deaf ears.
The replies open to all are in the comments but I also got some recipes via e-mail.
The spousal unit and I launched BeanStock 2006 with one of the first e-mail replies, the spicy little number below, which was sent by Toejam. I would only be half kidding when I said I picked this recipe just to see how the spousal unit would react to being told that he was cooking something recommended by a person a.k.a. "Toejam".
Right there is reason 4,152 to be grateful that you do not have to suffer the horrors of marriage to me.
Here's what we made:
Caribbean Black Bean Chili
4 cups dried black beans
How ya do it:
4 cups dried black beans. Rinsed, picked over and drained. Put in a
Add 1/4 cup chili powder, 1/4 cup cumin, 2 tbs sugar or honey, 2 tsp salt, 2 tsp. black pepper, 1 1/2 cup orange juice, 3/4 cup fresh lime juice, 3 tsp. grated orange zest, 2 tsp. grated lime zest, one 28 ounce can of crushed tomatoes and 6 cups of water.
Stir in the reserved beans and return to a simmer. Reduce heat to LOW and cook partially covered, checking occasionally and adding more water as needed, until the beans are just soft to the bite...about 1 1/2- 2 hours.
Adjust seasonings and top with fresh cilantro and/or sour cream and/or cheddar cheese. (The spousal unit and I used plain low fat yogurt and fresh cilantro.)
Okay, first off, I have to tell you that I had terrible misgivings about this recipe. I hate zesting because I don't have a zesting tool. I am reduced to scraping my citrus on the finest holes on my grater which always involves knucklecide. Always. It's hard to work up enthusiasm for a food that you know is going to make you bleed. Plus there is the frustration of having to mine the grater for the microscopic zest bits. Oh, and let's not forget the horror of post zesting grater clean-up.
But I love spicy food, and the allure of a recipe that uses a whole ¼ cup of cumin, my favourite spice of all, was too great to be resisted.
Even with two of us a-choppin' and a-stirrin' and all my shortcuts, there was still a fair bit of prep time. While the pot was simmering that night I had some terrible misgivings because it smelled weird and all the citrus in it gave it a taste I didn't like.
This recipe makes a lot of chili as in vat o' chili.
I stuck it in the fridge overnight because I've found that a lot of one pot meals don't really come into their own until the flavours have had eight or ten hours to mingle. If that didn't work, I was going to try some fixes that Mimi suggested.
When I put the chili on the stove to simmer for a few hours mid-afternoon Friday, the beans had beaten back the overwhelming citrus note. I thought when I read the ingredient list that it would be blast furnace hot, but while this chili is nicely spicy, it's not OMIGAWD I'M MELLLLLLTING hot.
(But then, when I was sautéing the chili and cumin in, I didn't sauté them for long because I was worried the minced garlic would burn. The longer you sauté hot spices, the hotter they become, so your mileage may vary from mine. Oh, and I like spicy food, so my definition of nicely spicy might strike you as "Oh, I think my eyes just caught fire" hot.)
I made a pot o' brown basmati rice and we ladled the chili on, topping it with a generous dollop of plain, active yogurt and a general sprinkle of freshly chopped cilantro.
I could go either way on this recipe, because citrus and beans combined just taste odd to me, but the spousal unit LOVVVVVVVES this dish. He ate two heaping bowls of it for supper and when lunch time rolled around Saturday he ate another huge bowl.
Since this is one of the few times it's not about me (and you can well imagine my bitterness over this state of affairs) the recipe is a keeper and will now go into rotation.
Even after our supper and his lunch, I had four containers' worth of chili to store in the freezer. I figure each container holds about three servings, so although there was a fair bit of time sunk into making the original batch, I now have about a month's worth of "instant" chili I can reheat at any time.
Plus, of course, I got to tease the spousal unit that he loves a recipe that involves Toejam.
There will be further bulletins as events progress
Oh, man, but I am having a hard time building back stamina. Ouch.
Want to delve into my sordid past?
She's mellllllllllllllting - Wednesday, Feb. 15, 2012 - Back off, Buble - Monday, Dec. 19, 2011 - Dispersed - Monday, Nov. 28, 2011 - Nothing comes for free - Monday, Nov. 21, 2011 - None of her business - Friday, Nov. 04, 2011 -
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