Would You Like Some ... Black Beans?

Beans are a staple in our house.  Soaked long enough and spiced enough, they’re delicious in many things.  I love black beans because of the lovely purple they turn when they’re soaked, and the refried-bean taste.  I have some cooking right now, with just garlic, and it’s making me ravenous despite the mini pizza’s I very recently devoured.

Basic Beans

  • 2 c. dried beans
  • lotsa water
  • salt
  • 3 cloves garlic (peeled and smashed)
  • 2 T whey
    (if you have it, it’s easy to strain it from plain yoghurt, it’s the liquid part)

Soak the beans overnight (at least 4 hours, up to 24 or so) in lots of water, and the whey if you have it.  Soaking helps pre-soften the beans so they’re easier to digest, and the whey helps break down the phytates in the beans, which tend to block mineral absorption, not a good thing.  So soak ‘em up!

Drain the soaking water, fill a pot with fresh water and add the beans and a good teaspoon of salt.  Bring to a boil, skim off the foam, add the garlic cloves, and simmer for about 4 hours or till nice and soft.  This is a weekend or a late-night activity for most, but it makes the house smell wonderful :). 

Drain, add more salt if needed, and you’re ready to top your rice, stuff a burrito, add some fresh veggies and dressing for a salad, or whatever floats your boat. 

Want to make it truly divine?  Mash those suckers up with a potato masher or whatever you have, put ‘em in a heavy-bottomed pan and melt 2-3 T of bacon fat, real lard, or beef tallow, and fry them till it’s all one dark creamy blob of deliciousness.  Be daring and add up to 1/4 c. of that stuff, it’s worth every calorie if you count them!  I’m on the natural fats are good for you bandwagon, in case you’re wondering. 

Either way, they’re great!