Braised black beans

Braised black beans

By
From
Cantina
Serves
4-6
Photographer
Chris Middleton

This is a ‘cheffier’ version of refried beans. Retain the inky cooking liquid to further enhance the colour and flavour of the beans. Serve them with spicy foods and barbecued meats or just with corn (tortilla) chips.

Ingredients

Quantity Ingredient
220g dried black beans, soaked overnight in cold water
2 large handfuls oregano leaves, roughly chopped
6 garlic cloves, 3 whole, 3 roughly chopped
1 cinnamon stick
1 star anise
1 teaspoon bicarbonate of soda
125ml extra-virgin olive oil
2 red onions, finely chopped
2-3 jalapenos
sea salt, to taste
freshly ground black pepper, to taste
lime juice, to taste
100g salted ricotta, grated

Method

  1. Drain the beans and place them in a medium saucepan with a handful of the oregano, the 3 whole garlic cloves, the cinnamon stick, star anise and the bicarbonate of soda. Cover with 4 times the quantity of water and bring to the boil. Reduce the heat and simmer for 40 minutes, or until tender. Drain the beans, reserving any cooking liquid. Discard the garlic cloves, cinnamon stick and star anise.
  2. Heat 60 ml of the oil in a large frying pan over low heat. Cook the chopped garlic, onion and jalapeños until soft and caramelised. Add three-quarters of the beans and 60 ml of the cooking water and cook for 2–4 minutes, until soft and thickened. Transfer to a food processor and blend, adding a little more of the oil and a little of the reserved cooking liquid to make a smooth purée. Return the purée to the pan. Add the remaining beans and oregano and reheat. Season with salt and pepper and a squeeze of lime.
  3. Serve drizzled with oil and sprinkle with salted ricotta and the remaining oregano. Store in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 1 week, or freeze for up to 3 months.
Tags:
Latin
Mexican
Mexico
Cantina
Paul Wilson
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