Tuesday, September 27, 2011

"Tastes Like Chipotle," he exclaims. [Rhonda]

Degree of difficulty: way easy
Time: 20 minutes total
Serves: 2 with leftovers

This is a dump-and-go version of my sister-in-law Connie's wonderful black bean dish she served when I visited in late August. She's a terrific cook, and the beans she made, which she served over rice as a side dish, were shakin' with the heat of cayenne, fragrant with cumin. It satisfied all my spice cravings for the night. Why I didn't turn to her right then and ask for the recipe is crazy. (Maybe it had something to do with the non-stop entertainment and energy-fest provided by their two little girls Kristi, 7, and Alena, 2.)

Last night found nothing on the Mike-and-Rhonda menu, so, rooting through the cabinet I came across a can of black beans, some diced tomatoes, and rice, and thought of Connie's meal. A little onion, garlic, splash of wine, and lime for the rice and it was a nice, healthy dinner with very little prep time.

Black Beans and Rice

1 15 ounce can black beans, partially drained
1 14.5 ounce can diced all natural tomatoes, partially drained
1 small onion, chopped
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 tablespoon olive oil
1/4 cup dry white wine
3 cubes frozen homemade chicken stock (optional--if not using, don't drain the beans and tomatoes and use those liquids in the mix)
1 teaspoon thyme
2 tablespoons cumin
1 tablespoon chili powder
1 teaspoon to 1 tablespoon cayenne, depending on how hot you like things (I went big)
1 lime
1 tablespoon chopped cilantro
Rice: cooked according to package directions. Just before serving, add the zest of 1 lime, the juice of 1 lime, and a tablespoon of finely-chopped cilantro if you have it.

(Additions to top the beans: sauteed onion and red or green peppers, sour cream, avocado, salsa, grated jack cheese. Think of what you like best in the Chipotle line.)

Saute the onion and garlic in the olive oil. Add the wine, reduce down a bit. Add spices, stir, and stock, if using. Add beans, tomatoes. Simmer on low heat for 15 minutes. Serve over rice.

Suggested soundtrack: "Freeze" by T-Pain and Chris Brown

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