December 5, 2011

Moros y Christianos

Cuban black beans are sometimes called frijoles negros (alone) or moros y cristianos (with rice). The dish is both a staple and a celebratory food.

Dried black beans (use instead of canned)
  • 3 cans (15 ounces each) of black beans
  • 2 cups vegetable stock
  • 1 green pepper, chopped
  • 1 large onion, diced
  • 4-6 cloves garlic, diced or crushed through a press
  • 1/3 cups olive oil for saute step
  • 1/4 tsp oregano
  • 1/4 cup orange juice
  • 1/4 tsp pepper
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1 Tbs sugar
  • 1 Tbs vinegar

To prepare:
  1. Heat the oil in a frying pan, and add onion. Sautè until onion begins to soften.
  2. Add garlic, green pepper, fresh ground pepper, and stock.
  3. Drain the beans. Mash 1 cup of the beans, and add all beans to the pot.
  4. Add the salt, oregano, bay leaf and sugar.
  5. Allow to simmer for an hour and add the vinegar and orange juice, cooking slowly for up to an hour. If there’s too much liquid, cook uncovered for a while.

Serve with rice.
Serves approximately 8 people; and goes especially well with crispy yucca and fried plantains.

Note: the key to this recipe is the play between the sugar and the acid. If you don't have OJ, use a bit more of both the sugar and the vinegar. Adjust to taste.

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