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One Pot Vegetarian Meal: Epic Black Beans & Rice in 30 Minutes
A Delicious and Spicy Recipe
This recipe goes well with all of your favorite Tex-Mex meals. It is an excellent side dish for enchiladas, burritos, tacos, or chalupas. I also like to serve it as a main dish with avocado slices, sour cream, tortilla chips, salsa and, of course, Frank's Red Hot Sauce.
The recipe makes about eight servings as an entree. As a side dish, it feeds a small army. It also makes a great filling for burritos and enchiladas, if you want to make them meatless.
You can, of course, add chicken, beef or pork for added protein. Many substitutions can be made to suit anyone's tastes.
All of the photographs featured in this lens were shot in my kitchen.
Pyrex Measuring Cup
Every kitchen should have at least one good measuring cup for liquids. I've raved about Pyrex baking dishes in some of my other articles, and my opinion of their measuring cups is the same. You can buy them in one cup sizes or larger, and they are all ultra heat resistant as well as BPA-free and dishwasher safe. Some of them even come with lids, so you can mix a marinade and store it in the fridge (or freezer) for later use. The one I own is the no-frills, lidless, two-cup size version pictured here.
- 3 tablespoons olive oil
- 3/4 cup brown rice
- 2 cloves minced garlic
- 1/2 teaspoon lime juice
- 1 1/2 cups low sodium vegetable broth or stock
- 2 heaping teaspoons ground cumin
- 2 teaspoons turmeric
- 1/2 teaspoon seasoned salt
- 1/4 teaspoon ground cayenne
- 1 can (8.5 oz.) yellow corn
- 1 can 914.5 oz.) diced tomatoes with chiles
- 1 can (15 oz.) low sodium black beans
- 4 scallions, chopped
- 1/2 cup fresh cilantro, chopped
What's your favorite way to enjoy beans and rice?
- In a large measuring cup, stir broth, lime juice and spices together.
- In a stock pot, heat oil over medium heat. Add rice and garlic and saute for about two minutes.
- Stir in broth mixture, bring just to a boil, cover and simmer for 20 minutes.
- Stir in canned ingredients, and simmer for another 5 to 10 minutes until rice is the desired consistency.
- Stir in scallions, then serve with chopped, fresh cilantro.
Bamboo Cutting Boards
I love these bamboo cutting boards, even though they are not as easy to care for as the cheaper, flexible ones. Bamboo has to be hand washed, as it cannot be put through a dishwasher cycle. Before I knew better, I did just that, and wooden cutting boards and spoons will crack or split after several washes. You also have to occasionally rub down your bamboo cutting boards with a special oil that you can buy specifically for this purpose; conditioning the wood with oil keeps it from drying out. You can use different types of oils, but they must be safe for consumption, so I simply buy a product that is made specifically for use on cutting boards, wooden utensils, butcher blocks, etc. Amazon is a great place to find a variety of brands at various prices, but I imagine you can find what you need at any kitchen store, although the selection might be limited. Another con of using bamboo cutting boards is that they can take on the odor of onions or other foods with a strong smell, but this is easily remedied by rubbing some lemon juice into the wood prior to conditioning it with oil.
Chop Cilantro the Easy Way
When chopping such things as herbs and green onions, I find it much easier to use kitchen shears than a knife. Below is a video tutorial on how to chop cilantro for those who don't own kitchen shears, or if you simply prefer to use a knife. The clip is short but very useful. Before you begin, wash the cilantro in cold water, then blot dry with paper towels.
Removing the stems can seem daunting and time consuming. As the chef in the video clip mentions, you can use the top part of the stems. All you really need to do is remove the longest parts that don't have any leaves attached. That's what I do; I don't worry too much about getting some of the stem in with the leaves.
Tutorial for Chopping Cilantro
For Best Results
- If at all possible, use fresh cilantro instead of dried. Be sure not to add the scallions until you are ready to serve the beans and rice, otherwise they will be overcooked and mushy.
- Brown rice takes a little longer to cook than white. Keep checking the consistency; you don't want your rice under-cooked and crunchy.
- I don't drain the corn or the beans; it adds more flavor. Also, by the time I add the canned stuff, the rice usually needs the extra liquid. In fact, you may find that you need to add a little water.
- Red beans work just as well as black beans in this recipe.
- If you're pressed for time, you can skip the second step entirely, if you don't mind leaving out the garlic. You can also skip the scallions and the cilantro, if you don't feel like chopping them up.
© 2011 Sara Krentz