Look at that yummy goodness. A shake of hot sauce or a squeeze of lime is good too.
A couple of weeks ago I opened my pantry on a Friday evening, looking for inspiration. I didn’t feel like grilling, frying, baking or generally cooking in any form. I was looking for something that would require little to no effort and that I could quickly make ahead for our Saturday dinner the next day. Oh, I wanted/needed it to be yummy and healthy as well. Basically, I needed dinner to arrive by magic, preferably prepared by the Hogwarts house elves and then arriving on a long, beautifully decorated rustic table with candles floating overhead against a night sky full of stars. Poof! It’s here! Dinner!
Sadly, for as long as I’ve been wishing for this to happen, roughly sixteen years or so since Harry Potter was first published in 1997 and then devoured by me before then reading it for a second time to my then two little girls, (in an English accent, I might add.), no house elves have magically delivered our food. **big long sad sigh** Once a muggle….always a muggle. I’ve accepted it. (not really)
It’s okay. Don’t be sad for me. With acceptance, even fake acceptance, comes the realization that another answer to my dilemma must be found. The answer was easy…slow cooking. I grabbed a bag of dried beans, rinsed them, picked through them and then put them in a bowl covered in water to soak for the night. Slow Cooked Cuban Black Beans has always been one of my favorites and I knew that I already had the rest of the ingredients at home. Yay me! Problem solved!
I then went to bed, hoping that the aforementioned house elves had turned down my bed and laid out my perfectly pressed clothes for the next day. It didn’t happen. I know….I know….let it go Teresa. Just let it go.
I’ve found and tried a few different recipes for Cuban black beans, but this is my favorite and the one that I use for the slow cooker. I adapted this recipe from two different recipes found on The Kitchn and on Tablespoon. I have another one that I use when I haven’t had time to soak the beans and need to use canned black beans. I’ll post that recipe the next time I make it. No worries, it won’t be long. I love it that much.
Here’s your printable.
Your reluctant muggle,
- 1 pound bag of dried black beans, rinsed thoroughly and soaked overnight
- 1 large onion, finely chopped
- 1 large green bell pepper, finely chopped
- 5 cloves garlic, minced
- 1 smoked ham hock
- 3 Tbsp. olive oil
- 2 bay leaves
- ⅓ cup white vinegar
- 5 cups of water (or more if needed during cooking)
- Mix all ingredients into a slow cooker.
- Cook on high for 8 to 9 hours.
- Add ½ cup of water if you notice that the beans look too dry during cooking.
- Remove your bay leaves before serving with or without rice.
- Garnish with chopped cilantro, tomato and onion and/or a shake of hot sauce. (optional)