Wednesday, August 31, 2011

Experimental Cooking: Black Beans and Veggies

Finally, a cooking post with a picture! This is a pot full of the start of black beans and veggies, which is a great meal that cooks up a large amount, and works perfectly as leftovers. This is what I make for lunch pretty much every week for the hubbie and I, cooking it in a large batch on Sunday afternoon (sometimes for Sunday dinner too), and then portioning it out for our lunches to take with us to work.

Black Beans and Veggies (8-10 servings)
  • 3 cans black beans, rinsed thoroughly
  • 2 Roma tomatoes, cut into bite sized chunks or smaller
  • 3-5 mini bell peppers OR 1-2 regular sized bell peppers, cut into bite sized chunks or smaller
  • 1 cup frozen corn
  • 1/4 onion, diced (usually a Vidalia onion)
  • 2 cups water
  • 2 tbsp Taco Seasoning

Mix all of the ingredients into a large pot. Bring to a boil, then reduce the heat to a simmer. Simmer for at least 30 minutes.

Serve with rice. Add salsa and shredded "Mexican" cheese if you like.

Commentary: This stuff smells AMAZING while it cooks, and it tastes great too. Rinsing the black beans helps cut down the sodium content that canned beans tend to have.

Variations: I have a lot of suggestions for this one:
  • If you aren't opposed to raw veggies, just put the onion and corn in while the beans are cooking, and save the tomatoes and peppers to be tossed on the top. My hubbie doesn't like raw tomatoes or peppers, so I cook them with the rest.
  • If you're a meat eater, you could add some taco meat or spicy sausage to this. Cook the meat separately, and then add it when you serve up the finished meal. We found a nice spicy chicken sausage at Trader Joe's that is delicious with this recipe.
  • The recipe itself is vegan and super low fat, but then we toss cheese on it, which changes both of those factors. I suspect it would taste just fine without the cheese, or with a vegan or low-fat cheese.
  • If you don't have my version of Taco Seasoning on hand, you can definitely substitute store-bought taco seasoning. You'll have to experiment with how much to add, but I'd guess about half a packet would do.

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