Category Archives: Beans

Fiesta Black Bean Salad


We had a Fiesta theme Birthday Bash for my Mother-in-law’s 60 th Surprise Birthday Party. I know this type of salad is one of her favorites. 

The salad is also vegan which I find enjoyable to always take a vegetarian entree wherever I go for meals. This way I can always count on at least one meal to eat at a potluck.  I prepare variations of this bean salad all the time; however, this go around I did make a few twists by incorporating an avocado, and green chilis to add some flare. 

Ingredients

1 large can black beans ( 822 g); rinsed and drained well

4 oz can of green chilis; drained 

1 large green pepper, diced 

1 large orange pepper, diced 

1 cup frozen corn kernels 

1 pint of grape tomatoes, cut in half

I small lime, juiced

2 Tablespoons jalapeño lime vinegar 

1 teaspoon ground cumin

1 teaspoon chili powder 

1/2 teaspoon kosher salt 

2 tablespoon of fresh cilantro, minced

1/4 cup red onion, diced

1 small ripe avocado, diced

Directions
:

1. Place all the ingredients in a large sealable bowl with the exception of the avocado. Use a rubber spatula to fold ingredients together. Let the salad rest overnight. 

2. Prior to serving fold in diced avocado. 

Tri-Color Spelt Lemon Rotini

This was a quick throw everything together kind of dinner tonight. We can call it Meatless Fast Dinner Friday! Bonus I received this free box of pasta from Natures Legacy this past week at work! I like how this spelt pasta only takes 5 minutes to cook! I love saving time in the kitchen. 

Ingredients
:

Cannelloni Beans, 1 can rinsed and drained 

1 box 8oz  of  Tri Color Spelt Ronini

1/3 cup shredded Parm Cheese

1/4 tsp red pepper flake

2 TB olive oil or canola oil

1 small zucchini quartered and chopped 

4 extra large garlic cloves, chopped finely

Cracked Red Pepper to taste

2 tb  fresh lemon juice

1/4 tsp lemon zest

4 fresh basil leaves, chopped
Directions:

1. Cook pasta according to packaging. Strain and set aside.

2. In a sauté pan, sauté up the olive oil and garlic. Cook the garlic until lightly browned. Add in the zucchini, sauté until it reaches your desired texture. I prefer my zucchini more firm than soft, so I only cooked mine for a minute or two. Season with freshly ground pepper to taste. 

3. Once the zucchini has Reached the tenderness you desire add in the beans and cooked pasta. Sprinkle the zest and pour in the lemon juice over the pasta.  Stir well with rubber spatula. 

4. Fold in the parm cheese, and lastly season with red pepper flake and garnish with basil.

Enjoy! 

Zippy Black Bean Salad with Tajin & Radishes

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Yesterday my husband and I had our families over for a Father’s Day picnic! We had a wide spread lunch with all kinds of summer time favorites. My husband smoked a pork shoulder over night for pulled pork carnitas. My mom made her famous mac salad, my mother-in-law made her famous sheet cake, & potato salad, my grandma lee made her calico beans.  We also had some other favorites like rhubarb pie, coleslaw, jalapeño cornbread.

It was a beautiful day for a picnic. Even though all of boys love meat, there were a few of us at the picnic who are herbivorous aka vegeterians. The other day, I made a few pounds of dry black beans in the pressure cooker and had some leftover for this colorful zippy salad.

 

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One of the vegetables both my husband’s dad and my dad love are radishes so I thought I would incorporate these into the salad as well.  Let’s face it my dad and my husband’s father are from the ever so popular “meat and potato” lovers generation. Any way I can get the men to eat vegetables in our family is a plus!

This salad is quick and easy and only takes a few hours to marry the ingredients together in the refrigerator.

 

Ingredients:

2 cups of black beans

1 cup of chopped celery about two stalks

1 TB apple cider vinegar

2 TB lime Juice (1 small lime)

1/2 cup Orange Bell Pepper, Chopped (about a half of a medium)

1/2 cup chopped red onion (about a 1/3 of a large onion)

1 green onion chopped

1/2 tsp to 1 tsp of Tajin

2 cloves of fresh garlic, chopped

1 cup of mini Kumato Tomatoes, cut in half

1/2 cup of radishes (sliced thin with mandolin) about 4 radishes

1/4 cup of chopped fresh cilantro

1/4 cup of chopped fresh chives

salt and pepper to taste (I like a lot of pepper 1 tsp); I did not add salt to this dish since my grandfather is on a low sodium diet and well we could all use a little less salt in our diets).

Directions:

  1. In a small bowl mix the apple cider vinegar, lime juice, tajin, garlic, salt & pepper. Set aside.
  2. In a large bowl mix together the remainder of the ingredients. Pour the prepared liquid dressing over the vegetable blend. Using a spatula fold gently the ingredients together. Place a sealable lid on the bowl and allow the ingredients to marry for several hours in the refrigerator prior to serving.
  3. Before serving fold the ingredients together one more time.
  4. Enjoy!

**** Caution there will not be many leftovers*******

 

 

Slow Cooked Cannolini Beans

 
I love slow cooked beans! I am obsessed! Veggie Protein Power!  Another bonus, I bought all these ingredients for less than 3 dollars. Not to mention I used our own homegrown spicy garlic to flavor the dish.

Ingredients
:

2 lbs dried Cannolini Beans aka white kidney beans (rinsed)

1/4 of a very large onion

1 tsp thyme

1 tsp Rosemary 

1 tsp  Mural of flavor 

6 garlic cloves

1 tsp penzeys vegetable base

10 cups of water plus One more cup at the end

Fresh Pepper to taste

Salt to taste

Directions:

1. Place all the ingredients in a slow cooker. Place crockpot on warm for 16 hours then place on low for 8 hours. You might need to add one additional cup at the end. 

  

Slow Cooked Black Beans Venezuelan Style

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I love beans and legumes, they are superfoods, these powerful vegetables contain natural sources of antioxidants and photochemicals. The American Dietary Guidelines recommend Americans consume at least 3 1/2 cups weekly of beans, which equals out to 1/2 cup daily. This is so easy to do. I add them to my salads, quesadillas, enchiladas, tacos, pastas, puree them to make dips for my carrots and snap peas. I also puree them to add to baked goods to add creaminess and moisture. I place the hummus on the top of pizza instead of tradition tomato sauce on pizza.

Beans contain more protein per serving than any other vegetable.  They are a cheaper source of protein compared to animal products.  I love that beans are naturally sodium free and fat free.  Plus these powerful beans are high in fiber to keep us regular.

I personally am not a huge fan of canned beans unless they are a high quality bean brand like Bushes Beans.  That said canned beans contain a high amount of sodium. I specifically made these low in sodium for my grandpa, so they are heart healthy for all. If you wish and you do not follow a low sodium diet you can add more salt to these beans. If you cannot make a fresh batch, I honestly would rather have frozen.This black bean recipe is so easy and inexpensive, you will question your next canned bean purchase.

The following recipe was generously provided to me by our dear friend from Venezuela, she makes the best black beans ever. We used to live next door; however, we moved and I have been craving them! We would always trade my sweet baked goods for her Venezuelan dishes. Luckily she provided me with her recipe to have whenever I want.

This recipe yields 2 qts of beans

Ingredients:

2 Bags of dried Black Beans, rinsed and strained (only about $0.80 to $1.00 a bag)

1/2 Yellow onion

6 cloves of garlic

Water

16 ounces Very Low Sodium Vegetable Stock or homemade, or more water

Additional (part two of the recipe)

1 yellow onion, diced

2 garlic cloves, optional

1 red bell pepper, diced

1 Tsp cumin

Salt to taste

Pepper, freshly cracked

4 qt slow cooker

Directions:

  1. Place  1/2 of onion, whole garlic cloves, & beans in a 4 qt slow cooker. Cover with enough water to reach above the beans about an inch. Place the slow cooker on warm for 12 hours. We did this overnight.
  2. After 12 hours has elapsed turn the cooker to low. You may need to add more water and this where you need to add the vegetable stock. Allow the beans to cook for 6 to 8 more hours.
  3. After the beans are tender and to your liking, I like mine slightly firm (not mushy), remove the 1/2 piece of onion and the garlic cloves.
  4. Spray a 10 inch saute pan with cooking spray and saute up the red pepper, garlic, cumin, pepper, and onion. Cook vegetables until translucent. Add the sautéed vegetables to the beans,  stir, cover ,and allow to cook for 10 more minutes on low.
  5. Enjoy!
  6. Serve with quinoa or rice. Place beans in a salad or in enchiladas or quesadillas or my most recent post Tex Mex Lasagna. Also you could puree these beans in a high power blender to make black bean hummus dip to spread on pizza or dip your veggies into it for a snack.

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Tex Mex Chicken and Black Bean Lasagna

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We had some leftovers of fajita chicken from dinner the other night & my leftover slow cooked black beans in the refrigerator. I used to make a dish like this when my husband and I were first married. I am not sure why I stopped making this lasagna. I think more than likely it was because most recipes yield 12 servings or call for a 9 by 13 inch pan. I tailored this recipe to fit an 8 by 8 for smaller families and/or couples.

We always have a stack of locally made, in the strip district, handmade tortilla shells frozen. One item I try to keep in the house at all times is tortillas. They freeze very well if you place a small piece of parchment paper in between each tortilla. Tortilla shells are very versatile. You can make so many meals with them from pizzas to burritos, to chips, to enchiladas to sandwiches…. The list goes on. One of my new favorites is lasagna. I love being resourceful with leftovers and what better way then throwing everything into a lasagna.

This recipe yields 6-9 servings

Ingredients:

1- 4 to 6 oz chicken breast grilled with fajita seasoning (which equals about 1 3/4 cup shredded or chopped)

4 – 8 inch whole wheat tortillas (plus one for corners)

1 tsp fajita seasoning

6 TB chipotle salsa (I use Trader Joe’s when I don’t have fresh on hand)

6 TB black beans ( I used my slow cooked homemade black beans for this recipe)

2 TB pickled jalapeños (chopped), optional

1 1/3 cup of enchilada sauce, plus more if you like a wet lasagna

1 1/2 cup of Mexican blend shredded cheese

1/4 cup of fat free ricotta cheese

2/3 cup fat free cottage cheese

1 TB fresh cilantro, roughly chopped

2 green onions, chopped

8 by 8 glass baking dish

 

Directions:

  1. Preheat oven to 350 degree. Take an 8 by 8 dish and cover the bottom with 1/4 to 1/3 of a cup of enchilada sauce. Place one of the tortillas in the middle of the dish. If you desire cut corners of the scrap tortilla to cover the corners of the pan. This will make sure your dish goes to the edges for a nicer appearance.  Set aside.
  2. In a small bowl mix cottage cheese, ricotta cheese, and fajitas seasoning. Place half of the cottage cheese mixture onto the tortilla shell in the baking pan & spread the cheese mixture evenly. Take 3 TB of salsa & 3 TB of black beans and evenly distribute onto of the cottage cheese spread. Sprinkle with 1/2 the chicken & 1/4 cup of Mexican cheese blend. Top with 1/4 cup to 1/3 cup of the enchilada sauce. Spread everything together evenly using a spatula.
  3.  Repeat previous steps by placing down another tortilla shell over the enchilada sauce and cuting corners of the scrap tortilla to cover the corners of the edges of the pan where the circle shell did not cover.  Add the remainder of the cottage cheese mixture,  & spread evenly. Add the black beans, & salsa and spread evenly with a rubber spatula. Sprinkle with remaining chicken and 1/4 cup of shredded Mexican Cheese. Pour 1/4-1/3 cup of enchilada sauce over the chicken and cheese, spread layer evenly, use spatula to make spread coat to  the edges.
  4. Top the enchilada sauce with one more tortilla shell, cover the corners with scraps. I like to use my kitchen sheers to cut out perfect scraps for the edges. Top with 1/3 cup of enchilada sauce and spread evenly. Cover evenly the sauce with  3/4 to 1 cup of shredded Mexican Cheese. Sprinkle with chopped jalapeños. Bake uncovered for 3o minutes at 350 degrees.
  5. Once the lasagna comes out of the oven let rest for 10 minutes prior to cutting into. This will help prevent it from falling apart. Sprinkle with chopped green onion & fresh cilantro.

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Enjoy!

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Quick Enchiladas

  
Who doesn’t love a fast & tasty dinner. These are my husband’s favorite go to enchilada. I love the fact that they are so versatile. They can be vegetarian or you can incorporate meat, either way you can sure get your protein in with these. This dinner cooks in 15 minutes and who doesn’t have time for that….

Serving Size 2 

Ingredients:

4 Corn Torilla’s (I like the trader joe’s reduced fat 6 inch ones)

2 TB salsa

1/4 cup black beans

1/2 cup Mexican Blend or Colby Jack Cheddar Shredded Cheese or 2% cheddar, divided

2 green onions, chopped, divided

1 tsp ground chilli powder

1 large garlic clove, finally diced

3-4 oz of grilled chicken breast, shredded, if making vegetarian switch out the meat for tofu or more beans pinto is a good combo

1/2 cup of fat free ricotta or fat free cottage cheese

1/2 cup enchilada sauce, divided

 

Directions:

  1. Place 1/4 cup of enchilada sauce on the bottom of an oven proof  8 by 10 glass baking dish. Set aside. Preheat the oven to 375 degrees.
  2. In a small to medium bowl mix, ricotta cheese, 1/4 cup shredded cheese, garlic, chili powder, green onion (save a few slices for garnish), salsa, chicken,& black beans.
  3. Down the center of each tortilla place 5-6 TB down of the filling. Roll the tortilla up and place it fold side down in the prepared baking dish. Repeat with all the tortillas.
  4. Evenly add the remaining enchilada sauce ontop and sprinkle with the remaining 1/4 cup of cheese and bake for 15-20 minutes on 375 degrees.
  5. Once you remove the dish from the oven you can sprinkle with remaining green onion for garnish.
  6.   

Cuban Black Beans and Brown Rice

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I love love black beans but I must admit I usually eat the ones in a can or more recently the frozen variety. I try to buy the lower sodium versions when possible but honestly there is nothing lower in sodium than the staple dried bean. I have always wanted to try making them from the dried state. Not to mention the cost is so inexpensive from a bag. 1.50-1.80$ for a pound! This recipe was adapted from penzey’s catalog winter 2015. I made them vegan and cut some extra unnecessary calories along the way. The best part to this recipe is you don’t have to soak the beans over night!!

This recipe yields 7 cups (7 servings)

Ingredients
1 bag 16 oz black beans (rinsed and run though strainer to remove any no bean particles)
4 cups of water
3 cloves garlic (diced) (we used home grown which are pretty potent so if you are using store bought you might want to increase)
1 TB ground cumin
Salt to taste (I only used a dash)
Canola Cooking Oil spray ( just enough to coat the sauté pan)
1 1/2 cups diced green pepper
1 1/2 cups diced yellow onion
1 TB red wine vinegar
2 whole bay leaves
4 cups of vegetable stock ( I used penzeys)
1 TB honey (or Splenda or one packet of truvia or stevia)
Pepper to taste
1/2 tsp of each pasta sprinkle, sweet basil, oregano, thyme, rosemary, tarragon
Brown rice cook according to package (optional)

Directions:
Place dried beans in a 4 quart sauce pan and cover.

Bring to a boil and allow to boil for 2 minutes. Turn off heat and keep beans covered and allow to rest 1 hour.

 

 

 

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In the meantime prepare and chop onions, green pepper, cumin, and garlic. Sauté in cooking sprayed 10 inch sauté pan. Cook for 5-10 minutes.

Rinse and drain beans.

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Place the beans back into the same 4 quart pan and add the sautéed vegetables as well. Along with the all spices, bay leaf, salt, pepper, honey, and vinegar. Also at this point in time add the 4 cups of vegetable broth/stock to the bean mixture.

 

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Cover and allow to simmer on low for 2 hours. Serve with fluffy brown rice or quinoa.

 

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Enjoy!!!