Quick Cuban Black Beans

Quick Cuban Black Beans (Frijoles Negros) involves soaking black turtle beans overnight and then cooking the next day but my recipe is much quicker.

Using tinned or canned black beans, I suppose it's a cheats version to Cuban black beans!

Cuban Black Beans in a bowl

I am not claiming this to be authentic but it's the closest I could get with a little help from a dear Cuban friend of mine who still lives in Cuba, Yirelys.

It was a bit tricky because although I had a basic idea of how to make them I wasn't sure as to exactly what ingredients Cubans would use in this dish and how much.

I'm pretty certain Yirelys has never made black beans from canned beans and probably wouldn't approve! However, when you want Cuban black beans in a hurry it calls for a little cheating.

I only speak a little Spanish (yo solo hablo un poco de espaƱol) and she doesn't speak very much English, so we use Google translate to communicate via Messenger.

I was trying to find out if it was fresh coriander (cilantro) or dried, so I ended up taking a photo of both and asking. Fresco was the answer so fresh it was then!

messenger screenshot

I have seen recipes that include spring onions but again I wasn't sure if that was a Cuban thing or not. So once again I wanted to ask my friend and that wasn't simple with the language barrier. I am still trying to learn Spanish and will get there one day, I hope.

I know in the US they call spring onions scallions. But thanks once more to the wonders of technology, I sent a picture of spring onions and the answer was a most definite 'No'

Anyway, armed with a very vague list of ingredients Quick Cuban black beans were on the menu.

Chicken stock:
At no time did my Cuban friend tell me to use chicken stock but I decided that although my tinned beans were in nothing but water (no salt or sugar added) to tip that away and use chicken stock to give it flavour.

To start you need to make a sofrito and in Cuban black beans, this consists of onions, green pepper and garlic.

sofrito for Cuban black beans recipe

Heat the oil in a frying pan and add in the onions, peppers, chilli. Cook on a low heat for about 10 minutes and then add the garlic.

Continue to cook for a further 10 minutes or so.

Cooking sofrito

Add in the coriander stalks and cook until the onions are soft but not coloured.

Cooking sofrito and adding in coriander

In a saucepan, add both cans of beans (drained from their water) along with the bay leaf and the chicken stock and heat over low heat.

By the way, don't be alarmed!
The tiny green bits in the saucepan, it's just the herbs from the chicken stock cubes. šŸ˜€

black turtle beans in a saucepan

Once your beans are warmed and the vegetables are nice and soft, use a slotted spoon and take out a spoonful of beans, allowing the liquid to drain back into the saucepan.

adding beans to sofrito to make Cuban black beans

Add the spoonful of beans to the frying pan with the onions, peppers and garlic and coriander. Mash with a potato masher or fork to combine as best you can.

mashing beans into sofrito to make Cuban black beans

Now add the beans to the frying pan along with the liquid. Add pepper, cumin, oregano, sugar, vinegar and stir together. Taste and add salt.

Cook on medium-low heat for another 5 minutes, remove the bay leaves and discard.

Cuban black beans cooking

Have another taste and adjust the seasoning if you need to and stir in the chopped coriander leaves.

Drizzle with a little olive oil and serve while still hot over cooked rice.

Quick Cuban Black Beans in a bowl

You can add a little more stock if you prefer your Cuban black beans soupier.


quick, Cuban,black,beans,recipe,frijoles,negros
side,lunch,dinner
Cuban
Yield: 4-6
Author:
Quick Cuban Black Beans

Quick Cuban Black Beans

A quick way to make Cuban black beans.
Prep time: 10 MCook time: 30 MTotal time: 40 M

Ingredients:

  • 2 x 400g (14oz) cans of black beans (in water, no sugar or salt added) drained
  • 250ml (9 fl oz) chicken stock - made from half of a Knorr stock cube
  • 2 small bay leaves
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 medium brown onion - peeled and chopped into small dice
  • 1 green bell pepper - deseeded and chopped into small dice
  • 1 jalapeƱo - stemmed, deseeded and finely chopped
  • 3 garlic cloves - peeled and very finely chopped
  • Small bunch fresh coriander (leaves and stalks separated) - finely chopped
  • ½ teaspoon black pepper
  • 1 teaspoon dried oregano
  • 2 teaspoons ground cumin
  • Pinch of salt - to taste
  • 2 teaspoons soft dark brown sugar
  • 2 teaspoons white wine vinegar

Instructions:

  1. Heat the oil in a frying pan and add in the onions, peppers, chilli. Cook on a low heat for about 10 minutes. 
  2. Add the garlic and continue to cook for a further 10 minutes or so, then add in the chopped coriander stalks and cook for another 2 minutes. By this time the onions should be soft but not coloured.
  3. In a saucepan:
  4. Add both cans of beans (drained from their water) along with the bay leaves and the chicken stock and heat over low heat.
  5. Once your beans are warmed and the onions and peppers are nice and soft, use a slotted spoon and take out a spoonful of beans, allowing the liquid to drain back into the saucepan.
  6. Add the spoonful of beans to the frying pan with the onions, peppers and garlic and coriander. Mash with a potato masher (or fork) to combine.
  7. Now add the beans from the saucepan to the frying pan along with the liquid.
  8. Add pepper, cumin, oregano, sugar, vinegar and stir together, taste and add salt.
  9. Cook on medium-low heat for another 5 minutes, remove the bay leaves and discard.
  10. Have another taste and adjust the seasoning and stir in the chopped coriander leaves.
  11. You can add a little more water if you prefer it to be a bit more soupier. 
  12. Drizzle with a little olive oil and serve either on their own or over some cooked rice.
Created using The Recipes Generator

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Jan