The second resolution was a seemingly simple one. Eat more beans. Now, I'm not talking baked beans in a can here. There is a whole world of dried heirloom beans out there and I wanted to try them all, or at least a good number of them. This was the second year I made this resolution and failed miserably.
I've been spending a whole lot of time alone lately and feeling pretty introspective since losing my job with the shut down of the organization. I think a lot about what I could have done better, or differently. I'd be lying if I said I didn't feel a small pang of regret. I gave up an entire year of my life and I can't help but wonder if I had put that much time and effort into this space, well I wonder where I would be now. I can't really do too much about that, but 2012 is not over yet and I can still try and eat more beans. So, this is my second batch in two weeks, not to mention I already have plans for the two remaining bags of beans in my cupboard. That's pretty good right?
The temperatures have been hovering around -40 degrees here for a few days now. Nothing is more comforting than something warm simmering away on the stove when the weather turns bitter cold. I always hesitate to post these extremely simple recipes, but I always find they are the most viewed. I hope I might convert a few canned bean people out there, and who knows maybe you will decide to eat more beans in 2013. I'm moving on to a new resolution...
adapted from Heirloom Beans
1 pound of beans (any kind you like, I used Sangre de Toro, simple black beans would be great too)
1 tablespoon olive oil
1 small white or red onion, chopped
2 cloves garlic, smashed and chopped
chopped red onions
Monterey Jack cheese
Place the beans in a strainer and rinse with cool water while checking for and removing debris and small pebbles. Place beans in a bowl and cover by about 1 inch with water. Cover bowl and let sit overnight.
The next day...
Place a heavy bottomed stock pot over medium heat, add the olive oil. Saute the onions and garlic until soft and fragrant. Add the beans with their soaking water to the pot. If there is not enough water to cover the beans by about 1 inch add more cold water to the pot. Turn the heat to high and bring the beans to a boil and cook for 5 minutes. Reduce the head to bring the beans to a point of barely simmering and cook, partially covered for about 1 1/2 to 2 hours, or until the beans are soft. Season with salt to taste.
Place beans in bowls and top with your favorite ingredients which can include lime juice, fresh chopped onions, fresh cilantro, or Monterey jack cheese. Two of my favorites are crushed up tortilla chips or crumbled cornbread.
Beans can be a hearty lunch or served as a side dish with dinner.