When it comes to beans, blacks ones are on the top of my list. I learned how to make them from a very old and dear friend. I was shocked to learn that you really don’t need much to bring the flavors out. “Keep it simple,” she always said.
1 -pound package of dried black beans
3 bay leaves
4 cloves of garlic
1 large green bell pepper, cut in quarters
¼ cup of sofrito (home-made or store-bought)
1 large onion, peeled and leave whole
3 tablespoons of ground cumin
Salt and pepper to taste
2 cups of water
Pick over beans, soak overnight in cold water and cover by about 2 inches. Next day pick out floating beans. Add another cup of water, green pepper, onion, bay leaves, garlic and salt to taste. Bring to boil and then to a simmer for about 2 hours adding the other cup of water only if you feel that it is needed. Add the sofrito and cook for another hour or until beans are done. Discard the bay leaves, remove pepper, onion, garlic and a few beans to blender and pulse then return to beans. Adjust taste by adding salt and pepper.
Serve with white rice or as I like it… drizzled with olive oil and chopped Spanish (red) onion and a bit of cilantro for garnish.