World Famous Black Beans? Really? Well, why not? My friend Elly at Elly Says Opa! created this black bean recipe ages ago and before making it, I had only heard rave reviews about it. And folks, those reviews are justified. These black beans really are quite fabulous and they are super easy to put together. They’ll cook in about 15 minutes on the stove top and I was able to throw them together while I was waiting for my favorite chicken enchiladas to bake up in the oven. Unlike the black beans served in Mexican/Tex-Mex restaurants, you’ll have control over the texture of the beans. I prefer my beans to be more on the mashed side like these refried beans with bacon but you can definitely mash them less and leave more whole beans – it’s up to you. As far as the flavor goes, shall I venture to say they were world-famous worthy? All of my favorite flavors of cumin, chili powder, and cilantro combine with my favorite Mexican food add-in (the black beans) to make the this a star side dish that I’ll continue to make over and over. And with Cinco de Mayo now just over two weeks away, you can bet that these beans will be on my menu that night!
Elly’s World Famous Black Beans
source: adapted from Elly Says Opa!
2 tsp canola oil
1/4 cup diced onion
1 fat clove garlic, minced
1 tbsp tomato paste
1 bay leaf
1 can (15 1/2 oz) of black beans, drained and rinsed
1/2 – 2/3 cup chicken or vegetable broth
1/4 tsp chili powder
3/4 tsp cumin
1/2 tsp oregano
Juice of 1/2 lime
Sliced scallions and/or chopped cilantro (optional, for garnish)
Heat a medium skillet over medium heat, and add the canola oil. Once shimmering, cook the onion until translucent. Stir in the garlic, tomato paste, and bay leaf until the garlic is fragrant and the tomato paste has cooked off a bit, about 30-60 seconds.
Add the beans to the pan and using a wooden spatula, smash about half of the beans. Stir in the chicken broth (start with 1/2 cup and you can always add a little more if necessary), chili powder, cumin, and oregano. Simmer over low heat, stirring occasionally, until flavors meld and most of the broth has been absorbed, about 10-15 minutes. Stir in lime juice and season to taste with salt and pepper as needed.
If desired, sprinkle with scallions and/or cilantro.