Wednesday, September 19, 2012

What's Cookin Wednesdays: Charro Beans!!

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If you were to walk into my house right now, it would literally smell like a good, authentic Mexican restaurant. Or in my case, grandma's house. All those deep earthy spices topped off with the aromas from spicy chile peppers. MMmmm! It's beaner heaven!! Yes, I said beaner because I am one! Today, I'm making Charro Beans (which literally means cowboy beans) and I'm sharing MY very own recipe to you.

Every Hispanic home has their way of making charro beans but they all have one big thing in common: Time. It takes about 6-8 hours to make a real good pot of beans. Best thing about this though, if you have a crock-pot, all you have to do is let them cook over night and they will be done in the morning. Just in time for breakfast!! Mash them up and make some refried beans with those babies..Ohhhh yeah, my stomach is howling right about now haha

2 cups of dry pinto beans
8 cups of water
4 slices of bacon (or less if you want)
1 small onion diced
1 jalapeno diced (optional)
1 can of rotel
1/2 cup of fresh cilantro, chopped
1 clove of garlic
1 T of cumin
salt to taste

Start by bringing the 8 cups of water to a boil. While that is going, place the 2 cups of beans in a colander and pick out all the bad beans or beans you would consider inedible. I've found rocks, twigs, and dirt in mine..Not something I would want to eat...Then rinse the beans thoroughly.
Put rinsed beans in crock pot. Pour boiling water over beans and turn on "low" setting. Add whole garlic clove to crock pot. Heat for two hours.
Don't stop to take pictures while holding boiling water. It's not easy...

While that is cooking, cut up bacon into pieces, place into pan and brown. Remove bacon and leave drippings. Add diced onion and diced jalapenos to drippings and cook until tender. Add rotel and let simmer for about 10min. 
Put tomato/onion mixture in crock pot and add cooked bacon, cilantro, cumin, and salt to taste.  If you need to add water, add very hot or boiling water. If you add cold water it will split the beans and that's a big no-no.

After about 4 hours check your beans. Add water if it needs any and do a "taste test".  Add more salt if needed and cook another hour. After about 7hrs total, your beans should be ready to eat! Pour into a bowl and garnish with cilantro and/or avocado if you'd like.

They are good to eat with warm tortillas (that's how we like them) or as a side dish complimenting any Mexican meal. Enjoy!

Do you do anything different with your re-fried beans???

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