There is a quite simple recipe for one of the most appreciated dish from Brazil and South America : fried beans. It makes a very nutritious vegetarian meal too.
In Central America, it is often complemented by corn tortillas and, with the addition of scrambled eggs, is a food suitable for any time of the day. In the Caribbean, this dish is called "Moors and Christians", with black beans as the Moors and the white rice as the Christians. In Brazil, feijoes (the Portuguese equivalent of frijoles) are usually made with black beans and served with pilaf rice.
There is what you will need for 4 to 6 people :
- 450g of Black beans.
- 1 medium hot red chili, finely chopped.
- 1 onion, finely chopped.
- 100g grated smoked cheese.
- 3 tomatoes, coarsely chopped.
- 1 sprig fresh Basil.
- 1 bay leaf.
- salt and pepper.
First thing first, soak the black beans in a cup of rock sea salt for 24h in water . Kitchen science will tell us that soaking dried pulses in salted water will make their cooking faster and avoid that they become dry and tough and experience will approve this advice. The next day cook them in water and the bay leaf for at least 2 hours. Do not add salt or acidic ingredients such as lemon, vinegar, wine, and tomatoes until the beans are finished or nearly done cooking. Adding earlier can cause the beans to toughen. Let them cool down in the water then stain them when lukewarm.
The next step is to roughly mash the beans. In a pan sautéd the onions (keep about a spoon full for the sauce) and 2/3 of the chopped chilli on a medium heat for 5 to 8 minutes. Add them to the mashed beans. Let this mix seat for 1/2 hour.
Place the tomatoes, basil, the rest of the chili and onions into a pot a cook gently for 1/2 hour. Season to taste and keep warm.
Place the bean mix into a frying pan with some oil and fry it gently until hot.
Transfer the feijoes into a dish, sprinkle the cheese over it, dispose of the sauce around the fryed beans. You can complement this dish with tortillas or pilaf rice.
"Nothing will benefit human health and increase the chances for survival of life on Earth as much as the evolution to a vegetarian diet. "