Monday, June 14, 2010

Homemade refried beans

Since I learned how to cook and freeze dried beans we've pretty much stopped buying canned beans. So much cheaper and no worries of BPA nastiness. But it never occurred to me to make our own refried beans until another blogger mentioned it.

We gave it a try the other month and, holy smokes, I think I'm ruined for canned refried beans forever. Not only was it less expensive to make our own, but they tasted so much better. Now we've got a  few frozen batches stashed away and ready to go the next time burrito night rolls around. A pint container holds about the same amount as a standard can.

I'm still experimenting with some different recipes, but the one below is the one we are using at the moment. It's a mild, plain flavor, just like you want out of your basic refried beans. It suggests smashing the beans with a potato masher, but I like going at them with my immersion blender instead. Much more like the familiar texture of the canned version that way!

Now to figure out how to recreate the green chile and lime refried beans. Mmmm.

Recipe below; printable version here.

  • 2 cups dry pinto beans, soaked
  • 2 to 3 Tbs. olive oil
  • 2 cups minced onion
  • 5 to 6 (or even more) medium cloves garlic, minced
  • 2 tsp. cumin
  • 1.5 tsp. salt
  • black pepper
  • optional: 1 small bell pepper, minced
Cook the presoaked beans in plenty of boiling water until very soft. Drain and set aside.

Heat the olive oil in a large skillet. Add onion, half the garlic, cumin and salt. Sauteé over medium heat about 10 minutes, or until the onions are soft. Add (or don't add) the optional bell pepper, and sauté another 5 minutes. Add remaining garlic; season with black pepper.

Turn heat to low, add beans, and mix well. Mash with a fork or a potato masher, and cook for just a few minutes more. Serve right away, or store in refrigerator or freezer until time to reheat.

Serves 6-8.

From The New Moosewood Cookbook

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