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Enfrijoladas

Enfrijoladas_easy-to-make-weekday-diner

Enfrijoladas are a humble dish. I almost can imagine some Mexican grandma in a hurry trying to make a meal with ingredients for two that will serve four or six with the beans she had. So Bad-a-bim! …she created a sauce, in order to stretch the beans, for all to eat. Aren’t these kinds of recipes the ones that everybody loves the most?…Serendipity in the kitchen can work love spells, just like this recipe.

Imagine fresh corn tortillas smothered in a smooth velvety bean sauce that has been seasoned and tinted with dry chiles. This dish features smokey anchos and a bright flavor guajillo chiles, sauteed onions and a couple of garlic cloves, all seasoned and blended to create a light and velvety bean sauce. Enfrijoladas are the cousins of enchiladas, only lighter. This velvety sauce, has a mild spice flavor, that in combination with the earthy and creamy bean texture make the most luscious bean sauce.

Enfrijoladas are typically filled with a mild creamy cheese called requeson, which would be the Mexican ricotta, creamy morsels of soft cheese mixed with crisp diced onions. Many other fillings are welcomed for a heartier meal like shredded roasted chicken, chorizo, spinach and cheese, zucchini, mushrooms, the combinations are endless. Put a sunny side up egg on it and call it breakfast!,
I personally like them served straight up. I love the flavor of the bean sauce. The chiles, onions, and garlic cloves season the creamy beans with out compromising the bean flavor; earthy, mild spicy, light and smooth. If you are feeling adventurous add some extra crunch and sprinkle some pork skin crumbs (chicharrones), to die for.

For me these bean cousins of enchiladas are my simple pleasure, beans, queso fresco, my mucha muchacha salsa, avocado, and a dollop of crema that will make me happy any day! Summer or winter, rain or shine.

Just make them, Enfrijoladas are a sure love at first bite, extremely easy to make, wether you make them as a casserole or plate them as you go, this
simple ingredients treated with a little extra love, will always “madly” love you back!
Enjoy!

Enfrijoladas_Ingredients_Yes,-more-please!

Enfrijoladas

2 cups cooked pinto beans*
2 cups bean broth
1 cup chicken stock or water
3 tablespoons sunflower oil
1 medium chile ancho, de-seeded and tail removed
2 long chile guajillo, de-seeded and tail removed
½ cup diced white onion
2 large garlic cloves
½ teaspoon salt

½ cup extra of water or milk to adjust the bean sauce consistency.

16 corn tortillas, 5” regular store bought.
For home made corn tortillas** use about a walnut size dough ball to make a 5”round
2-3 tablespoons sunflower oil

For the filling:

½ pound queso requeson(mexican ricotta), queso fresco doble crema, or crumbled goat cheese
¼ cup small diced red onion
salt to taste.

Garnish with:

Queso Cotija
Crema Mexicana
Avocado Slices
Salsa Mucha Muchacha recipe here
Quick pickled Red onions:
Thinly slice ½ medium red onion, rinse under running water really well. Place onion slices in a small bowl, squeeze ½ lime, add a generous pinch of sea salt, a pinch of dry oregano and 2-3 tablespoons of water.

*How to cook your beans tutorial
**How to make homemade corn tortillas tutorial

Preparation Method:

1.On a large sauce pan, over medium heat, warm up the oil. Add the pieces of dry chiles, onion, garlic and a pinch of salt, saute until onions are softened, dry chiles have a bright color, and slight blistered. At this point add the cooked beans along with the bean broth, and chicken stock. Bring to boil and let it simmer for about 10-15 minutes, until the dry chiles look re-hydrated and plumped.

2.Set beans aside cover for 5 minutes. Place the sauteed beans, onions chiles into a blender.
Remember to always be extra careful when transferring hot liquids into a blender. You can also use an immersion blender, or a food processor to make this sauce, although I’ve found that the blender works best to leave a smooth airy velvety sauce.

3.Transfer back the sauce into the sauce pan, keep it warm at the lowest temperature stirring now and then. Taste, and adjust for salt, or liquid if to thick. To test thickness submerge a wood spoon on the sauce, and run your finger over the back of the spoon. If the two sides remain separated, the sauce is on point. This bean sauce, should feel smooth creamy but not overly thick. If to thick add a bit more water, or milk. If it is to thin, cook up some of the liquid whisking at all times.

4.Warm up each tortilla by quick frying in a little oil, you want them soft and playable, but with a little color. Gently submerge each tortilla into the warm bean sauce. Place them into a platter fill them with the requeson-onion mixture (mexican ricotta cheese) and fold them in half or into fourths like you would do with a crepe. Once you have them all folded keep them warm in the oven. Reheat the reminder of the bean sauce and add a little more milk or water to adjust consistency.

5.Serve 3-4 Enfrijoladas per plate and ladle one or two spoonfuls of the bean sauce on top, add a dollop or squeeze some crema, sprinkle the cotija cheese, garnish with avocado and red onions…and a little drizzle of “that” Salsa Mucha muchacha

A comer!…Enjoy!

Enfrijoladas_How-to-make-enfrijoladas_step-by-step_Yes,-more-please!Enfrijoladas_Easy-Mexican-Cooking

A few drops of my mucha muchacha salsa… Mmmm!

Enfrijoladas_Yes,-more-please!

Let’s cook!

Music pairing: Bonito – by Jarabe de Palo

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Enfrijoladas

Course Breakfast, Main Course
Cuisine Mexican
Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 30 minutes
Total Time 45 minutes
Servings 4 people

Ingredients

  • 2 cups Pinto beans
  • 2 cups Bean broth
  • 1 cup chicken stock
  • 3 tablespoons Sunflower oil
  • 1 medium Chile ancho de-seeded and tail removed
  • 2 long Chiles Guajillo de-seeded and tail removed
  • 1/2 cup white onion diced
  • 2 large garlic cloves halved
  • 1/2 teaspoon Salt
  • 1/2 cup extra water or milk to adjust the sauce consistency
  • 16 pieces corn tortillas home made will be amazing1
  • 2-3 tablespoons Sunflower oil to slightly pan fry the tortillas

For the Filling:

  • 1/2 lbs. Queso Requeson (Mexican Ricotta), queso fresco doble crema OR goat cheese.
  • 1/4 cup red onion small diced
  • Salt to taste

Garnish with:

  • Queso cotija
  • Crema Mexicana
  • Avocado slices
  • Quick pickled red onions

Instructions

  1. 1.On a large sauce pan, over medium heat, warm up the oil. Add the pieces of dry chiles, onion, garlic and a pinch of salt, saute until onions are softened, dry chiles have a bright color, and slight blistered. At this point add the cooked beans along with the bean broth, and chicken stock. Bring to boil and let it simmer for about 10-15 minutes, until the dry chiles look re-hydrated and plumped.

    2.Set beans aside cover for 5 minutes. Place the sauteed beans, onions chiles into a blender.

    Remember to always be extra careful when transferring hot liquids into a blender. You can also use an immersion blender, or a food processor to make this sauce, although I’ve found that the blender works best to leave a smooth airy velvety sauce.

    3.Transfer back the sauce into the sauce pan, keep it warm at the lowest temperature stirring now and then. Taste, and adjust for salt, or liquid if to thick. To test thickness submerge a wood spoon on the sauce, and run your finger over the back of the spoon. If the two sides remain separated, the sauce is on point. This bean sauce, should feel smooth creamy but not overly thick. If to thick add a bit more water, or milk. If it is to thin, cook up some of the liquid whisking at all times.

    4.Warm up each tortilla by quick frying in a little oil, you want them soft and playable, but with a little color. Gently submerge each tortilla into the warm bean sauce. Place them into a platter fill them with the requeson-onion mixture (mexican ricotta cheese) and fold them in half or into fourths like you would do with a crepe. Once you have them all folded keep them warm in the oven. Reheat the reminder of the bean sauce and add a little more milk or water to adjust consistency.

    5.Serve 3-4 Enfrijoladas per plate and ladle one or two spoonfuls of the bean sauce on top, add a dollop or squeeze some crema, sprinkle the cotija cheese, garnish with avocado and red onions…and a little drizzle of “that” Salsa Mucha muchacha…

    A comer!…Enjoy!

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Mexican Beans Manifesto

How-to-cook-dry-Beans

Cooked, de la Olla, or Refried… I want to share with you my love for beans and how I bean.

I’m from Mexico. Along with corn, this simple food is a staple in our national diet. There are many great foods from my homeland but homemade beans have a way to my heart. The warm earthiness, texture, and flavor of a well prepared pot of beans, this is my comfort food. In fact “frijoles de la olla” boil-cooked beans are my “last supper” meal. With this said , you can imagine I’m very particular and appreciative about identifying truly great beans.

My love affair with beans’ simplicity that made me realize how many versions of “how to cook beans” are out there. They utilize many ingredients, cooking methods, pots, herbs, you name it , and yet most miss the mark for me when it comes to authentic style Mexican beans. I can not understand how something so simple to make has been so misunderstood. I feel the deep responsibility to clear this confusion and define Mexican style beans. After this you will discover an untroubled path in preparing this Mexican caviar.

Keep it simple. Slow down. When it comes to beans, It is about respecting the ingredient. Slowly and patiently cooking a pot of beans will yield the best pot of beans you ever had. Why to cook them by scratch? they taste far better than from the can, period. So lets start.

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How to chose your beans:

Type of Beans:
There are infinite possibilities when it comes to beans. From the dark black beans which have a delicious intense flavor, to the medium brown creamy Pinto Beans, to the light, creamy and more potato-ey flavor like the Peruano, Mayocoba or Flor de Mayo beans. Each of these varieties have different purposes. They pair better with different Mexican cooking styles. For example, Black Beans found in Central-East and South East of Mexico, Mexico City, Oaxaca, Chiapas, Veracruz, Campeche, Yucatan, Quintana Roo. Peruano, Flor de Mayo are more common in South Central like Jalisco, Michoacan, Zacatecas, San Luis Potosi. While Pinto beans are the beans of choice for almost all the North of Mexico, all the way from Tijuana to Monterrey.

From the traditional store bought varieties the most common kinds are Pinto Beans, Peruano, Mayocoba, Flor de Mayo, and Black Beans. These four kinds are available in most supermarkets in the USA.

Heirloom Beans: These are the caviar of beans. If you truly want to experiment and try new flavors and textures, this varieties are gonna blow your socks off.
My favorite source for heirloom beans here in the states is Rancho Gordo. Steve Sando has truly made an authentic effort and a life mission to rescue the almost lost varieties of heirloom beans in Mexico and Latin America. Thank you Steve!. My favorite Beans from Rancho Gordo: Rebosero, Rosa de Castilla, Acoyote Negro, Rio Zape, Pinto Beans, and of course me being from Guadalajara Jalisco, Flor de Mayo or Peruano for refried beans are one of my favorite beans.

Where to buy your beans?

I shop for beans at Mexican or ethnic supermarkets. Why? Well, where I live and shop they have new-er beans, since their turn-around on the dry beans purchase is bigger than in other stores. I often buy them pre-bagged. I like to make sure than the bag looks shiny, “hint”-you know how plastic bags can get a little opaque the older they are. Look for well sealed no holes or static webs on the inside corners of the bag. Usually these are more evident signs that let you know if the bag has been on the shelf for a long time. Use common sense.
When it comes to buying them from bulk sections, shiny beans are a good sign. The smell of the bean will let you know if they are fresher. Old dry beans start to smell a bit nutty and rancid. If you have your doubts ask the manager in charge of the bulk area or simply don’t buy them. You have to trust your source.

I always buy my dry beans one or two days before I cook them and I don’t usually have lots of bean bags on my pantry. I would rather cook them all at the same time and keep them in the freezer ready to go. I think this is the trick to convenience when it comes to beans.

How-to-cook-Dry-Beans_Mexican-style,-Utencils,-Clay-pots,-Wood-spoons,-Bean-Smasher

Where to cook your beans:

Bean pots make the difference when cooking beans, from flavor to cooking time, always choose what ever is best or more convenient for you.
Clay pot, the traditional way beans are cooked. I truly believe there is not a greater bean than the ones cooked on clay pots, so delicious. The Clay pot imparts great flavor to the beans. Make sure your clay pot is from a reliable source and that it is made for cooking. Both of my pots were given to me from a lady from Chihuahua ( Thank you Felipa I love my pots!) So if you know somebody from Mexico ask for a favor, its worth it. Also, It is unbelievable how fast beans cook in a clay pot.
Cooking time: 1hr and 30 minutes, to 2 hours tops.

Dutch enamel creates a great heat source, however your pot might get stained or darken a little bit.
Cooking time 3-4 hours.

Cast iron, beans will get an extra douse of iron. A slightly metallic flavor might be imparted. But if your cast iron pot is well seasoned this option is a winner!
Cooking time 2hrs and 30min.

Stainless Steel, safe and sound, it might take longer to cook, since stainless steel pots don’t retain as much heat as clay or cast iron, but it will get the job done. Clean flavor and no committing to buy a new pot. Time to cook 2hrs and 30min. to 3hrs.

Slow cooker The safest bet for people with busy schedules. I love the slow cooker results. If I choose to use the slow cooker method I cook them in my enclosed patio to avoid the cloudy smell of beans inside my house during the cooking time. It works like a charm!
Time: on high about 4 pounds of beans need 5-6 hours, depending on your slow cooker. Try to set up a timer, check on beans for doneness so next time you know how long they need.
Note: For slow cooker beans always, always salt until they are fully cooked. Let beans cool down on the pot and they will absorb the salt.

Pressure cooker: No doubt this is the reverse of slow. The fastest method to cook beans on a flash of time. If you are less romantic than me when it comes to cooking, this is your ticket to fast and efficient. Beans will be ready in 45 minutes aprox.

To soak or not to soak?

To be honest with you, I never soak my beans and I always have great results. In fact I don’t like to soak them. When I have done this my beans split and the skins separate from the bean… I just don’t have great results with soaking them. As I mentioned, my advice is to buy buys from a reliable source, and always cook them on a slow simmer. How slow? Well you barely see one or 2 bubbles coming up. Beans don’t like to be on a hurry when cooking.

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Bean Seasoning:

Very few seasonings. When cooking a basic pot of beans, I just add : ¼ of a medium size onion, one chile (fresh or dry) and water.
Experiment. I usually use a fresh chile with whiter beans, like pinto and Peruano. When it comes to Reboseros and Black beans I go for a Cascabel, Morita, Chipotle or a Guajillo. Why? Well I think that fresh chiles will complement the milder beans, and the deep rich beans like negros, acoyotes, and rebozeros, because of their color and deeper flavor will benefit from a dry or smokey chile, although there is no rule for it this is just how I bean.
When it comes to herbs and spices you can add some epazote fresco, or garlic specially when cooking black beans, which will compliment the flavor turning the broth into a liquorish herbaceous flavor.
White beans like cannelloni, will benefit from rosemary, bay, or fennel fronds. But wait a minute…this is a Mexican Bean post…rewind that..oh well.

Howto-cook-Dry-Beans_Best condiments to cook your beans

SALT matter:

Use good flavorful sea salt, or Kosher salt. Remember the recipe is just beans and a little onion and a chile, so the quality of the salt you are using is going to shine through. I use sea salt from Cuyutlan, Colima, Jalisco Mexico I love the flavor and freshness of this bright salt. Check this link if you want to know more about it. 
Always salt your beans right before you think they are done, about 30 minutes or so. If for some reason the beans are ready and you have not salted them, no worries, you still have the chance to add the salt stir carefully, cook for 5 more minutes and turn the heat off. The beans will keep absorbing some of the salty broth, its not the end of the world its just beans. The biggest mistake would be salting the beans at an early stage of cooking. This will make the skins tough, and they will not cook evenly. So restrain.

Howto-cook-Dry-Beans_Pinto-Beans

When Cooking Beans:

Sort, and rinse well your beans.this is important, sort throughly look for little stones or dry sticks from the plant. Rinse them in cold water rubbing well one or two times until water come out clear.
Slow down. Beans like to be cooked at a steady heat. Bring water to a boil, add the beans and then lower the heat to a slow simmer. Covered with a agar lid. Beans like to be tossed every now and then, but not to often. Give them time, enough water about 3 inches of water over the bean level. If water is needed during the cooking and beans look a bit dry ALWAYS add boiling water, and gently toss. The boiling water will keep the beans from splitting and skins will not fall apart. Always salt your beans a little before when they are fully cooked, and when ready let them sit on the stove to slowly cool down. If you live in warm humid weather, you might want to cool your beans faster and transfer your beans sooner to the refrigerator, since they can turn sour in a blink of an eye.

How-to-refried-beans

Fat:

Lard, Sunflower Oil, Corn Oil, Coconut Oil, Bacon, No matter what kind of fat you choose, for me the most important step when preparing refried beans is to cook and heat your oil or fat of choice properly. Place the oil or lard or a combination of both in the pan and let it warm up slowly, until is rippling hot. The color on the oil or lard must change to a deeper golden before adding your onions. This is an essential step, if you remember to heat up and cook your oil, you will always have great flavor in your beans. Authentic refried beans are made with lard there is no other way. The flavor is incomparable. But the reality is that for every day beans sunflower or corn oil is what everybody uses at home, leaving the lard-beans for holidays or special celebrations. When using Lard, I highly recommend leaf lard-pastured non-hydrogenated. If you live in Austin Tx, Salt and Time sells great quality lard on small amounts conveniently packed in their refrigerator. (Great to make amazing tamales by the way) Other brands for good quality Lard, Fatworks, or Leaf Lard are great.

A great alternative to avoid animal fat but give great flavor to your beans is Coconut Oil. I highly encourage you to give it a try, especially on black beans, with some sautéed plantains on the side…Mmm.

Freezing:

Beans can not be more noble, they freeze beautifully; freeze them whole in their broth or refried. They stay good for up to six months!!!. This is why I encourage you to cook a BIG batch of beans every time you make them. I portion out for 2-4 and I Freeze them into disposable bags, or small plastic containers that will fit my saute pan or soup pot, so I can de-frost on the stove if I forget to thaw them. (which seems to happen all the time) and since I reheat on a stovetop. These portions last me 1-2 months and they are life savers of convenience. On weekends I reheat some frijolitos and serve with tortillas and a good salsa and a couple of eggs for a breakfast of champions.

After all this information, now you might have a better grasp on the bean matter. So following there are 4 basic recipes for you to try. First one Frijoles de la olla, its the basic you need to start cooking your beans at home. no matter what kind of pot you have, apply the same recipe and concepts.

Frijoles de la Olla:

Frijoles de la olla, any type of beans can be cook in this manner, a few suggestions on what to add for different seasonings are included at the end of the recipe. A bowl of this beans, with pico de gallo salsa, a dollop of crema, queso fresco, and home made corn tortillas its all I wish for my last supper.
How-to-cook-dry-Beans_Frijoles-de-la-olla---Yes,-more-please!

Makes about 12 cups of cooked beans plus broth.

2 pounds/1 kilo of dry beans (pinto, peruano, flor de mayo, rebozero, or black beans etc..)
sorted,and rinsed.
8-10 cups water
1/3 white onion
1 dry chile like arbol, cascabel, huajillo or 1 fresh chile, like serrano, jalapeno, guero or habanero.

Sea salt about 1-2 tablespoons upon your taste.

In a clay pot, add beans,water, onion, and chile. Bring water to a boil, then lower the heat to a slow simmer. Cover with a lid. And cook for 1hr and 30 min. Stir beans once or twice using a long wood spoon. Gently stir beans from bottom to the top. Test for doneness: carefully take one bean and smash in between your fingertips. If is soft like a potato but holds it self together they are done. If they feel a little firmer in the middle they are almost there, add the sea salt and cook them for another 15-20 minutes. Check for doneness, taste and turn off the pot leave the lid on and have your self a little pre-tasting in a bowl. Correct salt if necessary.

At this point they are ready. Serve these freshly cooked beans with pico de gallo, Mexican crema, queso fresco o frijolero, warm tortillas, and a spicy salsa it all you need for a great legume dinner. Enjoy!

Once the beans have cooled down portion out your bags and containers and label with date and name. Freeze and use when ever you need them. If in need of a bigger batch, double the amounts on this recipe minus 2 cups of water and go easy on the salt. Remember you might need a bigger pot. Have fun!

The next 3 recipes are the basic of how to make refried beans. Truly re-fried beans Mexican style. Humble and simple but if you follow this little steps you will have great refried beans at home. Enjoy the recipe ride!

Refried Beans

You can make refried beans practically with any kind of bean. My favorite versions are Flor de Mayo, Pinto, Rebosero, Peruano and Frijoles negros.

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Yields about 3 cups

¼ cup Sunflower oil, corn oil, coconut oil.
¼ cup chopped white onion and pinch of salt.
4 cups cooked beans
1 cup bean broth

In a saute pan heat up the oil on a medium high heat until rippling hot. I recommend using a pan WITHOUT non-stick coating like cast iron or stainless steel. Saute onion until you get golden brown edges. Carefully add the beans and bean broth pouring away from you, to protect your hands from any splatter. Bring to a boil, reduce heat to slow simmer and start mashing up the beans until creamy*, Some visible skins are ok. Once they are smashed, start stirring constantly until they look pasty and start separating from the edges of the pan. Usually if you can shake your pan and all the beans stay together like a blanket that slides on the pan, your refried beans are ready!, Slide them onto a platter and fold like making a big oval shape. Crumble some queso fresco, or cotija anejo, some totopos and they are ready to serve, Enjoy!

Variations:
Chiles: Add one dry or fresh chile, like arbol, cascabel, or serrano to the oil and saute along with the onions to give some extra spice note to the beans. Remove the chile before smashing the beans, or smash along if you are a spicy soul.
Lard: If using lard, it is a must to cook the lard on low medium heat until it changes color to a golden light brown. This is a key step that will give the best flavor to the beans. Add onion and a chile for extra layer of flavor.
Herbs:Any addition like hoja de ahuacate, hoja santa, epazote, poblanos can be added when sauteing the onions for extra flavor. It is very important to remove the herbs before smashing the beans, to avoid the beans from getting bitter.
*Remember you can mash them up to your preference, I some times like them a little chunky, or well mashed and I add a bit more bean broth to make them more creamy and loose.

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Chorizo-Arbol Refried Beans

This beans are simply scrumptious. Specially if you use a good quality chorizo. Here in Austin, Tx my favorite chorizo is made and sold by Smith and Smith Farms. It is a fresh chorizo, not cased, very meaty crumbles with just the right ratio of fat. Spices are spot on to make this delicious chorizo beans. (If you are in Austin give Colby a call and he will save a little bag for you at any of the Farmers Market on Sundays, Mueller or Domain). 

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Yields 4-5 cups

2 tablespoons cup Sunflower oil, corn oil.
3 dry chiles de arbol
6 oz chorizo fresco
¼ cup chopped white onion
4 cups cooked beans
1-1/2 cups bean broth
1 teaspoon apple vinegar

In a large saute pan, heat up the oil and toast the chiles de arbol into the oil until dark mahogany red.
Remove the chiles and set them aside. Add the chorizo and crumble finely using a wooden spatula. Saute the chorizo along with the chopped onions until onions are soft. Add cooked beans, bean broth, vinegar and one of the toasted dry chiles. Bring to boil, reduce to a slow simmer. Smash the beans until creamy, some pieces of skins and the little chorizo crumbs are visible it is ok. Saute for about 3-4 more minutes until desired consistency. I like this kind of beans on the lose side, but is totally up to your preference. When ready transfer into a plater, sprinkle some queso fresco, and garnish with the rest of the toasted chiles de arbol. Serve immediately along with totopos or warm corn or flour tortillas are ideal, Enjoy!

how to make Chorizo Beans-Frijoles con chorizo

Black Refried Beans

These Black beans are one of my favorite beans. They are full of flavor, decadent and rich.
Serve them like Veracruz style with some sauteed plantains on the side, some sauteed serrano peppers or habaneros and you will have the best side dish for cochinita pibil, rice and chicken, pork tamales, chile con carne or a simple home made breakfast with two sunny side up eggs on the side.

How to make refried Black beans_Yes, more please!

Yields 4 cups

1/4 cup Sunflower oil, corn oil, lard or Coconut Oil*
¼ cup chopped white onion and pinch of salt.
2 smashed garlic cloves
4 cups cooked beans
1-1/2 cups bean broth

In a non non-stick (cast iron, stainless) saute pan heat up the oil on a medium high heat until rippling hot. Saute onion until golden brown edges, add garlic and saute for 1 minute be careful not to scorch the garlic. Carefully add the beans and bean broth pouring away from you, to protect your hands from any splatter. Bring to a boil, reduce heat to slow simmer and start mashing up the beans until creamy*, some visible skins are ok. Once they are smashed, star stirring constantly until they look pasty and start separating from the edges of the pan. Usually if you can shake your pan and all the beans stay together like a blanket that slides on the pan, your refried beans are ready!, Slide them onto a platter and fold like making a big oval shape. Garnish with some sauteed serrano peppers or habaneros, plantains, crumble some queso fresco, or cotija anejo, totopos and they are ready to serve, Enjoy!

*Traditionally these black beans are made with lard. My advise, is get the best pure lard you can get. I highly recommend leaf lard-pastured non-hydrogenated. If you live in Austin Tx, Salt and Time sells great quality leaf lard on small amounts conveniently packed in their refrigerator. Other brands Fatworks, or Leaf Lard are great too. A great alternative to avoid animal fat but give great flavor is Coconut Oil. I highly encourage you to give it a try, especially on black beans. It adds great flavor, and in combination with some plantains, its to die for.

How-to-Refried-Black-Beans_Frijoles-Negros-Fritos_Yes,-more-please!

So this is How I bean…How you bean?

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Music Pairing: Bonito y Sabroso-Como Fue Beny More

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Yankee-Mex Bison Chili

Yankee-Mex-Bison-Chili_Warm-up!_Yes,-more-please!

Probably this recipe may offend a few of our Texas cooks. Please don’t let the title of this recipe scare you away… Bare with me, you, dear Texans.

This chili with beans recipe is what results of a marriage, between a South Mexican girl and a Northern Michigan boy. My chili has to have beans. As you know we live in Texas, which I believe there must be a written law somewhere about no beans in chili. We hope we don’t get into trouble, but if we do, with all your respect, heck yeah!, I want a pot of this trouble for any given Texan winter night.

I’m using Ground Bison full of rich meaty flavor, lots of character and the right amount of fat. To complement the ground bison, I used a type of black bean called Rio Zape. They are a bit larger than black beans, meatier, creamy and with a very earthy flavor, than when cook it produces the most delicious cloudy broth. I love this bean flavor win combination with all the chili spices. A dash of Apple cider vinegar to brighten up the chili powders it’s must. Garnish with sour cream, onions, and Colby cheese. A side of freshly baked cornbread is the perfect accomplice. This Yankee-Mex chili has a great depth of flavor, from the ancho chile, a bright mild spiciness from New Mexico chili powder and a hint of lingering spice from a dash of cayenne pepper. Its well balanced flavors and the right consistency will warm up your inside out. Let’s cook!

Yankee-Mex-Bison-Chili_ready-to-serve!Yankee-Mex Bison Chili_Bison the other great meat

Yankee-Mex Bison Chili

Serves 2-4 Yankees and maybe 1 exiled Texan.

3 tablespoons corn oil
1 large white onion diced
3 garlic cloves finely chopped
2 lbs. 90%-10% lean Ground Bison
4 dashes Worchershire sauce
1 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon Black Pepper
1/2 teaspoon ground mexican comino
2 heaping tablespoons Ancho chili powder
3 heaping tablespoons New Mexico chili powder
1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper
1 tablespoon tomato paste
1/2 teaspoon dry mexican oregano
2 pinches mexican cinnamon powder
About 2 teaspoons grated piloncillo*
1 tablespoon apple cider vinegar
1 bay leaf
2 cups beef broth, sodium free.
2-3 cups Rio Zape or Black beans cooked*
2 cups of the Bean broth. If you cooked your beans reserve the broth. If you are using canned beans, rinse the beans discard the liquid and substitute for 1 cup of beef broth, sodium free and 1 cup water.
2 tablespoons corn masa harina, diluted into one cup of the broth above.

For Garnish:
Sour cream, Colby cheese shredded, green onions or red onions diced, fresh sliced jalapeño or serranos.
Serve with Skillet Sweet corn Bread. Recipe follows. Or this Corn bread muffins or this honey-jalapeño corn bread.

Preparation Method:

1. In a cast iron enamel pot, sauté the diced onions until translucent. Add finely chopped garlic, sauté until fragrant.
2. Add Ground Bison, break the ground beef into small pieces with a wooden spatula. Add worcestershire sauce, comino a bout 1 cup of the beef broth, salt, and pepper. The liquid will help the ground beef to separate into smaller pieces. Stir constantly until liquid has evaporated in half.
3. At these point the meat looks juicy, lose ground texture and glistening. Sprinkle the ancho, New mexico, and Cayenne chili powders evenly. Stir until the ground bison has a dark red and all meat its well covered into the chili powder, add the tomato paste until well incorporated. Sauté for 2-3 minutes. Add dry oregano, cinnamon, grated piloncillo, vinegar, and toss well briefly.
4. Add the 2 cups of bean broth, bay leaf, toss well, bring to a simmer and let simmer for 8 minutes. Toss every now and then.
5. Dilute the corn masa harina into one cup of beef broth until no lumps. Add this mixture to the chili, while stirring to avoid clumps. Simmer gently for another 8-10 minutes stirring now and then.
6. At last add the cook beans, add a little more beef broth if needed. Taste and adjust salt. Simmer for another 5 minutes until beans are warm and the consistency is like a lose gravy. At this point you decide if you prefer a more lose chili or a gravy like consistency. Cover with a  lid and Keep chili warm, let all the ingredients talk to each other. before serving. Meantime start baking the corn bread! Recipe follows…Yankee-Mex-Bison-Chili_Step-by-Step_Yes,-more-please!

Quickie Skillet Corn Bread:

Serves 4

1- 6″ cast iron skillet.
2 tablespoons corn oil

Dry ingredients:
1 cup corn flour
1 ear of sweet corn kernels
1/4 teaspoon kosher salt
1 teaspoon sugar, or honey
1 tablespoon baking powder
1/2 cup Colby cheddar cheese shredded

Wet ingredients:
1 cup whole milk
1 egg
2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil, corn oil or melted butter

2 extra teaspoons of corn oil for the pan

Directions:  Preheat the oven at 400F, Add 2 teaspoons of corn oil into the skillet and place the skillet on a baking tray, in the oven to heat up.about 5 minutes.
Mix dry ingredients, Mix wet ingredients and combine, mix well. Carefully open the oven, slide the baking tray and add the cornbread batter into the skilled as fast as you can. Spect splatters. Close the oven and cook for about 17-20 minutes, until center springs back and golden brown top. Sprinkle some smoked paprika to taste. Serve while is warm.

Yankee-Mex-Bison-Chili_Simple-Skillet-Sweet-Corn-bread

7. As soon the corn bread its out of the oven, Serve Chili on warm bowls, garnish with sour cream, colby shredded cheese, green onions.

Yankee-Mex-Bison-Chili_warm-chili-with-Rio-Zape-Beans,-a-Winter-recipe-must!Yankee-Mex-Bison-Chili_and-toppingsYankee-Mex-Bison-Chili_warm-chili-Yes,-more-please!

Eat . Warm up . Repeat . Enjoy!

Music Pairing: Devotchka – You Love Me

https://youtu.be/97prq7XfNgI

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Carne en su Jugo Jalisco Style

Carne-en-su-Jugo-_Jalisco-Style_Yes,-more-please!

This recipe is dear to my heart. A traditional dish from the city I was born: Guadalajara, Jalisco Mexico. It brings me lots of memories from my Mom’s cooking. You see my Mom is not an avid cook; but the dishes she prepared for my brother and I when we where little, where always prepared in a delicious manner, and well seasoned with love. This is one of my Mom’s best dishes for sure.

Now, how can something so simple and humble as a combination of beans, meat, and a simple broth can be so darned good? I do not know, but once you make sense out of this combination of ingredients that seems to want to be a guisado, but is not a guisado, and wants to be a soup, but its not a soup, once you prepare it, you will understand why I like it so much.

What is not to like about thinly sliced juicy meat, flavored with a little bacon, simmering in its own juices, along with fresh cooked beans and their broth, some herbs, chile and tomatillos? The result it is far better than it reads, or than it looks. It is a loose stew. Perfect for the transitional weather, when you almost want it to be Fall or Winter but its not there yet. And of course it is a must make dish on a rainy or cold weather day. Easy to prepare, one pot situation.

Carne-en-su-Jugo-Jalisco-Style-the-cadillac-of-recipes-ready-to-serve

In Jalisco, there must be almost be one recipe for each family, and this recipe its no exception. Keeping with the traditional elements on the dish, and having my Mom’s version in mind, I just went with the Cadillac version.

Yes, this is the Cadillac of the Carne en su jugo. I used Texas Wagyu sirloin tip thinly sliced. When braised, this sirloin tip, is tender, it holds a great texture, and flavors the broth richly and heavenly with a good balance of fat.*For the beans, I used Rio Zape from my favorite Heirloom beans from Rancho Gordo; deep flavor, creamy and the broth that this beans produce when cooked is dark and rich, adding more flavor and dept to the broth. A couple slices of organic Applewood bacon enhance the flavor of the broth, the bacon fat makes a great fond to the broth base, and the crunchy bacon bits are used to garnish the dish when served, adding texture and a sexy appeal.

Carne-en-su-Jugo-_Jalisco-Style_Texas-Wagyu-steak

For the rest of the dish, I used the same fresh ingredients as the traditional recipe, a hint of tomatillo, onions, garlic, Serrano and lots of cilantro like my Mom use.

The result its the coziest bowl of juicy meaty-beanie stew. It is served with little white onions “cebollitas cambray” that have been chard, fresh cilantro, fresh white sharp onion, lime juice, corn tortillas maybe some queso fundido on the side. I mean this is a serious family meal, yet easy to make and a crowd pleaser.

* Special Thanks to Kristen and Ryan from Salt & Time Butcher shop, for always providing great help advice, and service. I love this place, if you are serious about your meat, please visit this remarkable quality meatery and start making your meaty dreams come true…

So let’s start cooking!…For this Carne en su Jugo you will need…

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