Sunday, February 17, 2008

Because I Know You're Wondering how the Beans and Rice Turned Out

Well, folks, I think we've got a winner. Here is what I did, and as you see, it was "inspired" by the Cooking Light recipe, but I changed some things, in part influenced by A.'s recipe that we discussed last night. I didn't note the prep time, though it couldn't have been more than a half hour from when I drained the soaked beans to when everything was simmering on the stove unattended, and it probably was more like 20 minutes. So here it goes:

  • 1 tbsp olive oil
  • 1 green pepper
  • 2 medium onions (I used yellow because I had them on hand, but I suppose red would be nice, too)
  • 4 ribs of celery (outer ones, if you were using the smaller inner ribs you might want more)
  • 1 jalapeño pepper, minced
  • 4 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1 pkg chicken sausage (jalapeño) - 4 links
  • 1 1/2 (or so - I just used up the rice that I had around the house) cups of long-grain brown rice (uncooked)
  • 1 cup black beans (dry, soaked overnight)
  • 2 cups kidney beans (dry, soaked overnight)
  • 14.5 oz. can of diced tomatoes, undrained.
  • 1 box of low sodium chicken broth (32 oz.)
  • 1/2 - 1 tsp dried thyme
  • 1 tsp salt
  • pepper to taste
  • 1 tsp cayenne
  • 1 tsp cumin
  • 1 tsp chili powder
  1. sort/rinse beans the night before and soak overnight. In the morning rinse the beans and sort again. (I'm sure you could use canned beans, but I had these in the house.)
  2. chop all the veggies. I tend to like a rougher more "rustic" chop (i.e., I don't have much patience for tiny chopping) but I did mince the garlic and the jalapeño, which I recommend.
  3. Heat the olive oil in a large pot, and then dump in the veggies. I had it on medium to medium-high heat. Cook the veggies until tender.
  4. While the veggies are cooking, measure the spices into a small bowl and mix. Also, measure out the rice, and chop the sausage into small pieces. (I quartered the sausage lengthwise and then chopped).
  5. When the veggies are ready, dump the spices in and stir until the veggies are coated. Cook for 30 secs. to a minute.
  6. Dump in the rice. Stir until coated with veggies/oil/spice mixture. Cook for about a minute.
  7. Stir in the beans, sausage, tomatoes, and chicken broth.
  8. Bring to a boil and then reduce heat so that it will be at a simmer while covered.
  9. Let it cook for about an hour and a half (less or more depending) or until the liquid is absorbed.
And here is what I see as I look into the pot in which I cooked this delicious concoction. It's spicy, but not "I'm crying as I eat the food that I made" spicy. Obviously you can play around with the proportions of the spices, leave some out, or add in other spices per your taste. It came out to approximately 10 servings.

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