Archive for the ‘Beans’ Category

Mexican-ish Bean Dip with Frijoles Refritos (“refried” beans)

If you have been to a Mexican style restaurant in US, you have probably come across the mashed beans known as refried beans. Well, I had some tortilla chips and dried pinto beans in my cupboard, so I thought, why not try a bean dip? I thought the refried beans will be a quick and simple thing to make. To be honest, its simple, but it does take some time. Luckily, I made enough for two batches and froze one for another day. Yay! There is some technique to getting that lovely creamy mashed texture. This video helped me a lot.

I also learned something. The term refried beans is the result of Americans “English=izing” a spanish word refritos. The prefix “re” in English usually means something that is done over again. Like replay a song, retake a test, etc. But the same is not true in spanish. So while fritos does mean to fry/cook, “re” just means to do it really well. So, it is just well cooked beans. Okay, lesson over.

  • 2c dried pinto beans- soaked overnight and pressure cooked with  bayleaves for 2 whistles (must be very soft, even falling apart) – Don’t drain the liquid
  • 3-4 green chilies minced
  • 2 sm or 1 lg onion, diced
  • 4 big cloves garlic
  • 2 tsp dried mexican oregano, or other dried herbs
  • 2 tsp cumin powder
  • 1 tsp red chili powder
  • pinch of turmeric
  • 2 Tbs butter + oil
  • salt

Fry onions till brown (cook them really well for at least 15 minutes) in butter and oil. Add garlic, stir. Add the spice powders. Then add 1 ladle of beans without the liquid. Mash them really well with the onions in the pan. Add 2 more ladles of beans, along with a little cooking liquid. Continue to mash. Repeat untill all beans are in the pot (No need to add all of the liquid, just a little bit with the beans to cook with).

After mashing to the point you like, turn up the heat and keep stirring. Once beans start to thicken, reduce to medium and cook until you can run the spoon through the pan, and the bean mash does not immediately come back together. Then you’re done!  I divided this in half, let the other half cool first, then freeze it in a plastic freezer bag, flattened.

this is how it looks when its done

Now, butter an 8×8 baking dish (or larger if you use the whole thing) and preheat oven to 350.

Spread the beans mixture in the dish, and top it with lots of chopped spring onions and shredded cheddar cheese(mine is sharp white cheddar). Bake until cheese melts, around 15 minutes. Serve with salsa and tortilla chips. **I also like to spread the chips on a cookie sheet and pop them into the oven for 5 minutes or so after taking out the bean dip, just to warm and crisp the chips!

This dip was really scrumptious and I topped it with homemade avocado salsa. Don’t leave out the spring onions if possible because I think that took it over the top (and JF agrees!).

Salsa:

  • 1 ripe avocado, cubed
  • 2 tomatoes, cubed
  • 1 shallot, diced small
  • 2 green chillies, minced
  • handful of cilantro, chopped
  • juice of 1 lemon
  • salt to taste

Mix together and let the flavors blend.

Im linking this to Aipi’s Bookmarked Recipes and MLLA hosted by Simona and Susan, to Real Food Fiesta and to Hearth and Soul!

Hearth n' Soul Blog Hop at A Moderate Life

Rajasthani Methiwale Chole

I got this recipe from Mr. Hemant Trivedi’s Cookery Corner

Here it is:

  • 2c well cooked channa/chickpeas
  • 2c methi/fenugreek leaves chopped
  • 1 lg or 2 sm tomatoes chopped
  • 1 in ginger grated
  • 3 green chilies
  • 1 tsp cumin powder
  • 1/4 tsp turmeric powder
  • 1/2 tsp garam masala
  • 1 tsp chili powder
  • salt
  • 1/4 tsp amchur powder or tamarind
  • 1 Tbs besan flour made into paste with 1 Tbs water

Tempering:

  • Ghee or oil
  • 1/2 tsp mustard seeds
  • 1 tsp cumin seeds
  • 1/2 tsp methi/fenugreek seeds
  • 3 cloves
  • hing

Heat ghee and add the tempering spices. Then add the methi leaves and cook them for a couple minutes. Add salt and all the masalas. Stir and add the tomato. Cook until completely softened. Stir in the chickpeas, and mash a couple spoons of them. Add a cup of water and simmer for 10 minutes. Add the besan paste and the amchur powder. Cook for 5 more minutes then add the coriander leaves.

Sending to Bookmarked Recipes at US Masala
and to
Complete my thali- Beans by Taste of Mysore and Joy of Cooking.


Vegetable Bean Barley Soup

Continuing on in the spirit of Cleaning out the Cabinets, here is another recipe to use several of my pantry ingredients. This is a delicious soup for a cold winter day (or ice storm as the case may be!).

Here’s what I did:

Soak 1/3c each of adzuki beans, red kidney beans, and black eyed peas (or beans of your choice) overnight

Pressure cook 2 whistles. After cooling, Keep half the beans in the freezer for the next soup!

Cook 1/3 c barley in 1 1/3c water by bringing it to a boil, cover, and reduce to a simmer for 20 min. In the meantime,

Heat oil, add mustard seeds, 4 shallots (all veggies mentioned should be chopped). Once they turn translucent add 3 cloves of garlic, 2 carrots, 2 red potatoes, 2 dried red chilies and 1 TBS Italian herb blend. Stir it around and saute for a few minutes. Then add 3 big leaves of swiss chard, 2 tomatoes, 2 c vegetable broth, cooked barley and any extra liquid, 1c cooked beans, 1c water, chili paste or hot sauce, 1 bay leaf, salt and bring to a boil. Cover and simmer until potatoes are done. Then add in 2c baby spinach, 2 spring onions and a handful of cilantro. To serve top it off with freshly ground black pepper, coarse sea salt, grated parmesan and/or nutritional yeast flakes.

Whew, that’s a lot of healthy goodness!

I was so lucky to receive a lovely gift basket in an exchange party before the holidays. I should’ve posted a pic before! It had some nice french milled soap, a soy based candle, hand cream, a small jar of “holiday” jam, lake champlain dark chocolate bar (used in the tiramisu), and the salt that you see in the picture above. The salt blend has dried lemon peels and fennel seeds and really adds a nice touch to the soup. I just discovered how nice fennel is in soup when I made the potato kale soup last year. If you don’t have this salt, you may want to add fennel seed to your soup. It adds a whole new dimension.

I’m sending this(a tad bit late) to Hearth and Soul event, which already has over 80 entries, wow!
Hearth n' Soul Blog Hop at A Moderate Life

Black Beans … chili?

I have had these pictures in the queue for a while now. Not sure why I hadn’t gotten around to writing about it. Maybe because I didnt know what to call it. Is it mexican? Is it indian? American? Who knows? It’s just yummy. It’s really just something I half made up when I heard about a dish called “black beans and corn cakes”. They are an excellent combination and made it into our regular rotation.

Here is what I did:

  • 1tsp cumin seeds
  • pinch of hing
  • 3 green chilies
  • 2 cloves garlic chopped
  • 1 red onion chopped
  • 1  green pepper choppe
  • 2 tomatoes chopped
  • 1/4tsp turmeric
  • 1 tsp chili powder
  • 1tsp cumin powder
  • 2 tsp coriander powder
  • salt, pepper
  • 2c cooked black beans
  • 2tbs sundried tomato paste (optional- had some and decided to use it today)
  • squeeze of lemon
  • coriander leaves

Heat a pan, add oil. When its hot add in the cumin seeds, then the hing, then green chillies and garlic. Then add the red onion and saute it well. Stir in the green pepper for a minute, then add the tomatoes and salt. Cover until softened and mash. Add in all the spices then the black beans. Stir until they are well coated with the spice/tomato mixture. Add the sundried tomato paste and a cup or so of water. Cover and cook until it comes together (you may need more water). Remove from the heat. Squeeze the lemon juice and top with chopped cilantro/coriander.

Serve with rice, quinoa, or corn cakes– recipe coming up next!

This is my submission to My Legume Love Affair hosted this month by Lisa of food and spice and created by Susan of  well seasoned cook.

Also, submitting this to Meatless Mondays at My Sweet and Savory.

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