black beans & memories

Black beans are not only a favorite food of mine, but one that carries a slew of  fond memories.  Cuban black beans are my Abuela’s signature dish, and they steal the show away from the lechon (entire roasted pig) every Nochebuena.  My vegetarian roommate’s signature black beans are the dish I most request that she cooks for dinner.  And black bean dip was my Tio Armando’s famous appetizer, which was featured at every big family gathering and demolished the moment it hit the table.  It is with these three wonderful influences in my heart and in my palette that I created a black bean creation of my own.

This black bean dip has a spicy kick a squirt of sriracha and a sweet hint from a generous pour of sherry.  It is versatile, addictive, healthy, and as it becomes a staple in my kitchen, I foresee it becoming a component of many future memorable moments.

Click more for recipe.

Black Bean Dip

2 tsp olive oil

½ large onion, chopped

1 tsp garlic, chopped

1 tsp salt

1 tsp pepper

2 heaping tsp cumin

2 cans black beans, rinsed and drained

½ cup canned crushed tomatoes

½ cup sherry

1 tsp sriracha

1 tsp sugar

Heat olive oil in medium saucepan over medium-high heat. Sauté onion for five to seven minutes, until it begins to soften. Add garlic, salt, pepper, and cumin and sauté for another three to five minutes, until onions begin to look translucent.  Add black beans and tomatoes and cook for about three minutes. Add sherry and cook for another five minutes.  Taste beans and add sriracha, sugar, salt, and pepper to taste.

Beans can be eaten as is, but to make the dip, do the following:

Turn off heat and allow beans to cool for at least 20 minutes.  Puree beans in blender or food processor until smooth, adding a small amount of olive oil as necessary to reach desired consistency.  Serve black bean dip with chips and crudite, or use as a spread on wraps and sandwiches.

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