Frijoles Negros: Cuban Black Beans

Luuuuucy, you got some splainin’ to do!

Cuba makes me think of one thing: Ricky Ricardo.  I Love Lucy may just be my favorite TV show.  I always turn to Lucy, Ricky, Fred, and Ethel to comfort me whenever I am sick or overly stressed.  The five of us have been through some tough times, such as the great flu debacle of 2011 and right now we’re going through graduate application madness of fall 2011.

Together with the gang and with the health power of black beans, I can do anything!  I love beans plain, but I needed a simple way to jazz them up a little.  This recipe is an easy way to give beans some flavor.  I buy dry beans to save a little money, but canned beans will also work just fine.  Also, the original recipe included green peppers, but I just won’t go there.  You can, but I would not advise consuming those things.

Adapted from Bon Apetit via Epicurious


1 cup dry black beans
Olive oil
1 medium shallot, chopped
5 cloves garlic, minced
1 tablespoon dried oregano
Dash of cumin
2 tablespoons apple cider vinegar
Salt and pepper, to taste


In a medium bowl, cover beans with water.  Soak for 6-8 hours.  Drain.
In a medium saucepan, combine beans with 3 cups of warm water.  Simmer over low heat for 1 1/2- 2 hours, adding additional warm water as needed.  Drain and set aside.

In a large skillet, heat olive oil over medium heat.  Add shallot and cook for 5-7 minutes, until softened.  Add garlic and cook 1-2 additional minutes, until fragrant.  Add black beans, oregano, cumin, and apple cider vinegar.  Cook for 2-3 minutes until vinegar has evaporated.  Remove from heat, season with salt and pepper to taste.

Serves 4 as a side dish.

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