There is something about beans and rice that I find very comforting. We can make a whole meal out of a simple dish such as this. I like to eat black beans and rice just about any way, but Cuban beans are probably my favorite. The recipe is inspired by several that I've tried over the years, including one from Latin American Cooking Across the USA, by Himilce Novas and Rosemary Silva. This version uses more tomatoes than the traditional Moros y Cristianos, but we like the extra juice. Cooking in the slow cooker makes it a really easy meal.
You can use 2 (16-ounce) cans of beans instead of dried beans. Drain them well and add to the slow cooker. Omit the extra water. Reduce the cooking time to 4 to 6 hours.
[Updated April 29, 2013.]
Slow Cooker Cuban-Style Black Beans with Rice
- 4 to 5-quart slow cooker
- 16 ounces dried black beans (rinsed and drained)
- 1 large onion (chopped)
- 5 garlic cloves (minced)
- 2 dried bay leaves
- 28 ounces canned diced tomatoes (undrained)
- 28 ounces water
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- 2 tablespoons red wine vinegar
- ½ teaspoon ground cumin
- ½ teaspoon oregano
- 4 ounces canned chopped green chilies ((less if you want to reduce the heat))
- 1 teaspoon kosher salt
- 1 large bell pepper (chopped)
- brown rice
- cilantro (for garnish)
- Stir together all ingredients (minus the salt and bell pepper) in the slow cooker. Cover and cook on high heat setting 8 hours or more, until beans are tender and most of the liquid is absorbed. About 30 minutes before serving, stir in the salt and the chopped bell pepper. Continue cooking on low until ready to serve. Remove bay leaves. Serve beans over cooked rice.
- Latin American Cooking Across the USA, by Himilce Novas and Rosemary Silva
- Memories of a Cuban Kitchen: More Than 200 Classic Recipes, by Mary Urrutia Randelman and Joan Schwartz