A Wonderful Fruit


Admittedly, we eat a lot of beans in our house.  I’ve only posted a few recipes, but that’s because I have to spread ‘em out so you can ease into flatulence at your own pace.  That aside, I’ve got dozens of favorites – bean salads, bean soups, baked beans, roasted beans – and, in an effort to spare you one of my rhetorical anecdotes, I want to quickly share with you one of them that is near and dear.

I began making this recipe - straight out of The Joy of Cooking - when Tygh and I first moved in together in Philly and we were missing the Mexican food of Eastern Washington something awful .  It has recently taken on a whole new importance, though, as - drum roll please – the kids LOVE them.  Black beans, all smashed together, homey and delicious as refried beans, though vegan and not at all fried.  I use canned black beans for these most commonly, because that keeps them on the top of my weeknight list of possibilities.  The kids love them rolled up in tortillas with tomatoes, avocado and cheese.  To that, Tygh and I add diced onions, cilantro, a few dashes of Tapatio and lime juice – basically anything that goes well with Mexican food – and turn them into a bean bowl.  Even better, these reheat beautifully, so you can cart them to work with some fixins for a #notsaddesklunch.

Smashed Black Beans

1 medium yellow onion, diced

2 small cloves of garlic, diced

2 Tbsp olive oil

4 (15 oz) cans of black beans, undrained

4 cups vegetable broth or water, divided

salt and pepper to taste

Avocado, fresh or roasted tomatoes, grated cheese, diced purple or green onion, cilantro, lime juice, your favorite hot sauce

Heat olive oil in a large skillet over medium high heat.  Add oonion and saute until lightly browned, about 8-10 minutes, stirring often.  Stir in garlic and cook until fragrant, another 30 seconds or so. Using a slotted spoon, add beans and 2 cups of the broth or water, bringing to a low simmer.  Let cook, smashing intermittently with the back of spoon or potato masher, about 10 minutes.  If the beans start to look dry, add more liquid, keeping in mind you will want them a little on the soupy side as they will thicken as they sit. Add salt - you will need a fair amount - and pepper.  Serve warm, with all of the above accoutrement.  Keeps in fridge about 4 days.  Freezes for 3 months and probably even longer.