Foodie Friday: coming up for air
Or, how to feed yourself (well) for a week with one pot.
Which is to say, my girl is out of town, and i am slammed at work and trying (mostly unsuccessfully) to catch up on all those little things that come with an apartment (like the kitchen, laundry, and bits of cloth and paint and wood and such that threaten to eat me when i walk in my door – also, Dog). Mostly, i have been hanging out with friends instead, which isn’t bad, except that it kind of is.
So, sorry, y’all don’t get a kitchen/book club/non-cooking bit this time, but this is what i have been eating all week; somehow i never do get tired of it (also, it makes a lot of food…it’ll feed two for a week if you mix in some other courses occasionally, if i remember correctly).
Moors and Christians
A cuban dish named, so they say, for the black beans and white rice. Heh. This recipe comes from a fantastic cookbook called Beans. The cookbook actually falls open to this page now ’cause i still like to pull out the recipe to make sure i’m not doing something dumb (like not putting any salt in…oops).
1 cup dried black beans, cooked
Cooking beans: Soak black beans (same goes for any similar smallish beans) in cold (room temp) water for 6 to 8 hours. I usually toss them in the water before work so i can cook them in the evening when i get home. Note 1: to fast-soak ’cause you forgot that part, bring the beans and water to a boil, boil 10 minutes, turn off, let soak in the hot water for one hour. Note 2: if it’s really hot your beans can ferment in the water (bad!), so you’ll want to change the water for new, cold water regularly (i just tried soaking them in the fridge…it seemed to work okay). Drain the soaked beans and put them in a pot with clean water. Bring to boil for a few minutes. Reduce to a simmer and cook for 1 1/2 hours. Ish. Beans are finicky, so check them – if the skins curl off when you blow on them to cool them they’re cooked.
1/2 cup (olive) oil
1 medium onion, chopped
1 green bell pepper, chopped (i skip this one)
1 bunch scallions, white and green parts, chopped
2 tbsp chopped garlic
1/2 cup roasted red bell pepper
Roasting bell peppers: i love roasting peppers (and eating them too). Basically, you want to burn the entire skin of the pepper – i just use an open flame on the gas stove and turn the pepper around with forks. When it’s all burnt up on the outside put it in a closed container while you chop up everything else – that lets it cool and steam a little. Then, peel off the burnt skin. This part is really messy, but the skin should come off super easily. (Also, be aware of your smoke detector and exhaust fan if you’ve got either.)
Preheat oven to 300. Heat oil in a big crock pot on the stove. Add all that other stuff (but not the beans), and cook for about five minutes. Then add:
4 cups veg or chicken stock (homemade preferably…more on that another time)
2 tbsp ground cumin
2 tbsp dried oregano
Salt and Pepper
2 cups long-grain rice (i’m partial to basmati)
The black beans
Bring everything to a boil, stir, cover, and stick in the oven for about 30 minutes. Or until all the stock’s been soaked up/the rice is done. Fluff/stir. Eat.
This is really good with a fried egg on top. The recipe also suggests fried plantain, which i haven’t had a chance to try, but you really can’t go wrong with that.
And i think i got that right…it’s off my head. And we know my head can’t be trusted.