Friday, May 14, 2010

Pinto Beans

Here is my healthier take on a southern staple. I love pinto beans but I'm not crazy about the whole ham hock method. These are so flavorful that I doubt you'll miss the old version when it's all said and done... your hips (and the pigs!) will thank you too. Ha!

1 bag dry pinto beans
4-8 cups of chicken stock (enough to cover the beans)
1 tsp cumin
2 cloves garlic
1/2 minced onion
1 teaspon olive oil
salt and pepper to taste

The night before you plan on making your beans soak them in a large bowl or pot of water. The next day, drain and rinse beans, check for rocks, debri, etc and set aside.

In a big red pot, saute your onion in the olive oil over medium heat for 4-5 minutes or until onion becomes translucent. Add garlic, cook for an additional minute and then add beans and stock. You will want to add just enough stock to cover the beans completely. Stir in spices and simmer uncovered for 2-3 hours. Beans are done when they are tender. Add salt and pepper as needed depending on your taste and the saltiness of your stock. Serve with cornbread for a great, hearty meal.

Want to make refried beans out of these? Simply drain beans, reserving about a cup of the cooking liquid. Blend all together in a blender or food processor. Eat immediately or freeze for later.

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