Thursday, April 28, 2011

Dried Beans

I'm trying to use more dried beans in recipes (it meets my criterea of cheap & healthy) and my family liked this recipe with bbq sauce added to it - Bramble Beans

I also make my own Refried Black Beans -- I love filling my freezer with just about the same amount as I'd spend on one meal!

I also made Sante Fe Burritos that everyone ate well (except my picky Ds#3, but we let him go hungry alot). I fuged the recipe alot and it still came out great! (I used a little hot sauce and a regular can of tomatoes, I used a mixed bag of dried beans cooked up and just measured out 10 cups, salsa instead of picante sauce, and I used the reserved chicken from the Chicken & Dumplings recipe I gave you a few days ago.

Santa Fe Beans Burrito Recipe brought by my friend Lisa when I had a baby.

Cooked & chopped chicken 3 C.
Canned corn, drained 15 oz.
Black beans, drained/rinsed 15 oz.
Black-eyed peas, drained 15 oz.
Pinto beans, drained 15 oz.
Ro-Tel tomatoes* 12 oz.
Picante sauce 15 oz.
Chili powder 1 T.
Cumin 2 t.
Shredded cheddar cheese 1 C.
**Buy: tortillas (2pkgs), sour cream and shred cheese to serve with
*Ro-Tel is a brand of canned tomatoes with chopped chili peppers added.

Assembly Directions:
In a large bowl, mix together the chicken, corn, black beans, black-eyed peas, pinto beans, tomatoes and picante sauce. Add the chili powder and cumin, stirring until evenly mixed.
Freezing Directions:
Put mixture in a one-gallon freezer bag. Put the shredded cheddar in a quart freezer bag. Seal, label and freeze both bags.

Serving Directions:
Thaw both bags. Pour the bag of chicken mixture into a spray-treated 9”x13” pan. Cover with foil and bake for 30 minutes at 350 degrees, or until heated through. Remove foil. Top with shredded cheese. Bake an additional 10 minutes, or until the cheese is melted.

Lisa told me: after I thaw and cook it, I like to wrap it in tortillas and serve with shredded cheese and sour cream, instead of melting cheese over the top and serving as a casserole (which we did try, I prefer the burrito version). This is how I make it.

What yummy way do you use dried beans??

Refried Black Beans

Refried Black Beans

Once the beans are soaked, fry & boil down 3 times for a total of about 1 ½ hours
1 lb Uncooked Black Beans
2 C Beef Broth
1 ½ TBSP Garlic
1 Onion, minced
Olive Oil

Clean (sort out bad beans and rocks, if any) and wash beans. Soak overnight (I turn the crockpot on low for this soak something like 10pm to 8am). Dump, Rinse and cover with water and half of garlic. Cook until soft (6-8 hrs in crock pot on low). Puree 2/3 of beans & a little bean "juice" in food processor (or mash with potato masher (they slipped right through a mixer)) and leave 1/3 beans whole. Put beans (whole & mashed) in skillet. Add onion & garlic. Boil down using extra bean “juice”. When it's a little drier than you want bean dip to be (like penut butter consistency add broth 1 cup at a time, stir in, and boil down again. If the beans get too wet, it boils hard and splatters more. After broth boils down, add oil to "fry beans" (stir the oil in). You have to stir a lot, about every 10-15 minutes to keep them from sticking. As they get drier, they stick more. When they fry down to about the right consistency, or a little moister than is quite perfect, turn them off and let them cool enough to put them in quart freezer bags. The longer they cook, the sweeter they taste (if using fresh onion). It’s good for a cleaning day – when you’re home, but mostly occupied (so you don’t resent the time stirring – I HATE STIRRING!) and so you pass by your burning beans, just in time to stir them again. This is the way I cook them. I make a double batch in my 5qt crock-pot. I serve them with any mexican dish.

VARIATION : In a stoneware dish, toss in every Mexican ingredient you can cook – cheese, sour cream, salsa, olives?, cooked chicken in taco seasoning?, taco beef? Whatever you have left – and a couple of cups of these refried beans. Then bake them for 30-60 minutes. Serve with chips.

This is my beloved and this is my friend. – Song of Solomon

Saturday, April 23, 2011

Have a beautiful BLESSING-filled Easter!!!!

And tomorrow I can get on facebook, again...among other things.

Cooking cheap and healthy...

"Back to the way my grandma cooked" is the result of my research on how to eat healthy. Eating potatoes, cooked various ways, rather than buying fries or hashbrowns or flakes at the store is how I'm going to accomplish this.
It means more work and less money.

While we planted seeds and got about half our garden in today...

Kate cut up, cooked & deboned a whole chicken for the first time today. She did a fantastic job! BOY, is that a lot of work! She boiled the chicken, then deboned it. We used half the chicken for my grandma's chicken & dumplings -- IT WAS FABULOUS!

We reserved the other half of the chicken meat for another meal. While the chicken broth was cooking down for the second 45 minutes, we took the skin & bones and boiled them again to get more broth out of it. So, out of 1 chicken ($5 on sale) and some flour, salt & pepper, we got 1 meal of chicken & dumplings, 4 cups of extra chicken broth & another chicken meal. We sopped up the broth in our bowls with homemade bread.

Chicken & Noodles, the old fashioned-way 2 hours

Jenn’s Grandma


Chicken, cut up


1 T


Salt & Pepper

1 pkg

Noodles, home-made

Brown chicken in butter. Fill large pan 2/3 full of water & bring to boil. Simmer chicken for 45 minutes, until meat is falling off the bones. Strain gook out of water, keeping water. Remove chicken & cool. Put water back in original pan, & add 1 additional cup of water. Boil noodles to package directions. De-skin, de-bone & break chicken into pieces. Add chicken to boiling noodles and simmer another 45 minutes. Heavily salt & pepper to taste.

This is extremely hardy.

Silence is a sword in the spiritual struggle.
–St. Faustina, Divine Mercy Diary

Dumplings (instead of Chicken & Noodles)

2 cups flour

1 cup milk or water (water = lighter dumpling)

4 tsp baking powder

1/2 tsp salt

Drop by small forkfuls into boiling broth 10 minutes before you eat.

When we yield to discouragement it is usually because we give too much thought to the past and to the future.

-St. Therese of Lisieux