Wednesday, August 25, 2010

A Southern Meal: Black Beans & Rice with Sauteed Okra

Well hey there from Virginia, ya’ll!
Okay enough. I live in Northern Virginia. Very different from Virginia. No farms, cows or tractors near me. Though I would 9 times out of 10 prefer the north (like New England), something is appealing about southern comfort, and I’m not talking about the alcohol.

Few dishes in my recipe box fit in with southern cuisine. Not a lot of soul food. Never a deep fried pickle. You get the idea.

Well, consider this an exception.
I happen to love black beans. Love. And did you know that beans and rice make one complete protein? Nice little nugget there.
I also hardly ever venture out in the vegetable world. I typically am eating broccoli, cauliflower, green beans, asparagus, squash, zucchini, carrots, mushrooms, peppers… oh wait. Well, I guess I do use a lot of different vegetables but none of them okra. So this was an experiment with me.
But my soco (southern cooking, c'mon!) was delicious! The beans had a creamy consistency and the okra had the perfect amount of spice. This is a great meatless meal but if you prefer, you can sprinkle some bacon on your okra. Whatever suits your fancy. 
Oh and check out this beauty with homemade croutons! To die for.
Next week I'll be making fried chicken and grits. Well, not really, but I'm going to find a healthier version for you. Alright that's it!

What ya need:

1 1/2 cups uncooked long-grain rice (didn’t have any, used Success Rice, oops!)
3 (15-oz.) cans black beans, divided
1 cup chopped onion
1 cup chopped green bell pepper
3 garlic cloves, minced
2 teaspoons olive oil
1 (14-oz.) can chicken broth
1 (6-oz.) can tomato paste
1 teaspoon ground cumin
3/4 teaspoon dried crushed red pepper
Salt to taste
Toppings: shredded Cheddar cheese, sliced radishes, chopped tomatoes, chopped fresh cilantro, sliced green onions, sliced jalapeño peppers

What ya do:
1. Prepare rice according to package directions.
2. Meanwhile, drain and rinse 2 cans black beans. (Do not drain remaining can of black beans.)
3. Sauté onion, bell pepper, and garlic in hot oil in a Dutch oven over medium-high heat 5 minutes or until tender. Stir in drained and undrained beans, chicken broth, tomato paste, cumin, and dried crushed red pepper. Bring to a boil; reduce heat, and simmer, stirring occasionally, 30 minutes. Add salt to taste. Serve with hot cooked rice and desired toppings.

 What ya need:

1/2 cup chopped onion (1 medium)
1/2 cup chopped green sweet pepper
2 cloves garlic, minced
2 tablespoons butter or margarine
8 ounces whole okra, cut into 1/2-inch pieces (2 cups)
2 cups chopped, peeled tomato (2 large)
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/8 teaspoon black pepper
1/8 teaspoon cayenne pepper (optional)
2 slices bacon, crisp-cooked, drained, and crumbled (optional)

What ya do:
1. In a large skillet cook and stir onion, sweet pepper, and garlic in hot butter over medium heat about 5 minutes or until tender. Stir in okra, tomato, salt, pepper, and, if desired, cayenne pepper. Bring to boiling; reduce heat. Simmer, covered, about 20 minutes for fresh okra (10 minutes for thawed okra) or until okra is very tender. If desired, sprinkle with bacon. 



Evan @swEEts said...

I've got to be honest, I've never had okra prepared like this.. I always get it fried :) ha

And I love your lil blurb about Northern VA..being from Herndon myself (woop woop) I would also like to add that I hate when people call it NOVA! haha

Brittany @ A Healthy Slice of Life said...

Okra looks great!! And I love that beans and rice create a complete protein :) I could totally eat up your plate of beans, rice, & okra- YUM!

Monet said...

I am such a fan of okra (my mom's favorite vegetable) and I love beans and rice as a vegetarian. This meal is right down our alley, and we will be making it soon!

Unknown said...

I reuse to believe people eat Okara--i think it is a myth told to Northern people when we visit the south and try it. :D
The pictures look great!

Ellen said...

That? looks delicious! I love okra... and black beans... and rice! Reminds me of one of my mom's meals. Great job! :)

Unknown said...

::sigh:: okra just happens to be one of those things that makes me gag. Been living in the south 15 years now and still can't take it. It's a pity too because you make it look so beautiful and yummy. :(

Gwen said...

I can not tell you how good that looks.... and I am not a fan of Okra. I will absolutely try this recipe though.... I suppose I should take my own advice and keep trying the things you don't like because your tastes change!
thanks for the recipe!

Drick said...

grat meal, but you know this is my kind of food - love it ... and nice salad too, coutons, oh yeah

Cookin' Canuck said...

I don't cook with okra very often, but this dish is calling to me. I'd love if you'd consider sharing this in the online Get Grillin' & summer bbq event I'm hosting (it's side dish week).

Richard C. Lambert said...

Few dishes in my recipe box fit in with southern cuisine. Not a lot of soul food. Never a deep fried pickle. You get the idea. sewing machines for beginners