Thursday, January 23, 2014

Tasty Homemade Refried Beans

If your family is anything like mine then rice, beans, and taco night are common fare.  We go through a lot of refried beans.

It has taken a while but I think I have finally perfected my refried beans recipe.  It took a few times to get it creamy and flavorful.  The previous attempts were either too dry or lacking in flavor.  

I found that soaking the beans in two changes of filtered water with a pinch of baking soda in each soak helped a lot.  The baking soda helps the beans release the phytic acid which can be skimmed off during cooking.  The phytic acid and other enzyme inhibitors give beans a lot of their *negative* side effects, removing these make beans more digestible.

Soak beans on your counter for 18-24 hours, changing the water 1/2 way through.

Beans with onions, garlic, and kombu

Skim off that foam!

I froze the pastured ham bones after the last batch of beans I made.  I figured I could get one more batch of beans out of them.

Refried Beans

bag of pinto beans
2 large onions
5+ garlic cloves
2 tsp baking soda divided
1 T salt
1/2 T ground cumin
1/2 T chili powder
piece of kombu
1 small ham hock or piece of bacon (optional)

1.  Rinse beans and remove stones or debris 
2. Soak beans on the counter with pinch of baking soda for 12-24 hours-change water ½ way through soaking

3.  Drain beans
4. Add onions and garlic
5. Add strip of kombu
6. Add ham hock or bacon (optional)
7. Add water to cover 2-3”
8. Bring to a boil and skim off foam that rises
9. Cover pot leaving a small gap for steam to escape
10. Simmer and 1 ½ hours until beans are tender
11. Remove kombu (mine totally disintegrated, so no worries)
12. Remove ham hock
13. Scoop beans, onion and garlic into a blender or food processor
14. Blend in the spices

I made a really big batch and then froze 3-4 cups per bag.

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