Wednesday, February 10, 2010

Beans, Beans The Magic Fruit, The More You Eat The More You ….

No matter what financial situation I am in, I always have beans on hand. Either canned or dry, red, black or great northern, beans are a staple in my kitchen. From a simple soup of beans and greens, to red beans and rice, black bean burritos, navy beans in my salad or chickpea hummus, beans have a long tradition of being a food that is inexpensive, impressive and in demand.

Many health gurus spout the wisdom of beans as being high in fiber, low in fat and a sustainable form of energy in your body. Want a protein boost, eat beans. It is all in how you cook them as to how healthy they are such as the lard-ridden refried beans you get at Taco Hell compared to the black beans I make (refried kind off) for my burritos. I probably eat beans at least twice a week, and have only found one problem with them – the after sound. But there is Beano for that and all is well.

One of the simplest bean recipes I know is one my sister, Cricket, taught me: beans and greens soup. This is a Latin classic and when I told a couple of my Latina friends, they just smiled like I was a child they were humoring. I thought it was a brilliant idea and they nodded being raised on this soup since they were wee. It’s really simple to, though I dress it up a little (I think my sister does too) with some hot sauce, garlic and maybe even bacon.

Beans and Greens Soup

1 can of Great Northern Beans
1 can of Glory brand collard greens
½ onion diced
1 clove of garlic diced
A couple slices of bacon
Maybe a can of diced tomatoes

1 cup veggie or chicken broth
Hot Sauce

Fry the bacon and when it is soft remove some of the fat and add in the onion and garlic. Cook them until they are translucent and if you are using tomatoes add them now. Then when it is all hot, go ahead and add the drained and rinsed beans and the can of greens – with the juice. Add the broth and some hot sauce to your liking and simmer until it is cooked through.

Spoon into bowls and enjoy. It is super simple and may seem a bit rural to some, but I love the taste and the Latinas agreed it is very authentic.

What is your favorite bean recipe??

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