Cuban Black Beans

After a few computer restarts and some tinkering with the blog…the photos are loading!  And I’m so excited, because I LOVE the recipe in this post.

My Sunday consisted of massive amounts of math studying and homework, followed with a trip to CVS & Safeway for a last few ‘necessities’ for my kitchen — I realized I hadn’t gotten flour, sugar, baking soda or baking powder, which are obvious necessities, and that I needed more ‘no leak’ Ziploc containers for all the soups, chilies and beans I’ve been making (and will be making).  While I ended up spending much more than I wanted, by getting the necessities now, I’m cutting down on grocery purchases in the future (or so I hope).

My evening consisted of making Cuban Black Beans.  And for the second night in a row, my kitchen (and therefore entire apartment) had an aromatic smell — but this time of Cuban influence.  This recipe is one I stumbled upon with my roommate in Penzey’s Spices last year in Chicago.  We loved this recipe for many reasons: 1) dairy free & gluten free, 2) easy, 3) it freezes well and most importantly 4) it tastes incredible (and smells just as good).


Cuban Black Beans (makes about 6 servings)

  • 2 cups dried black beans
  • 2/3 cup red wine (I usually use a cheap Cab Sav)
  • 1/3-2/3 cup olive oil (I prefer EVOO)
  • 1 large onion, chopped
  • 1 green pepper, chopped
  • 4 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1-2 bay leaves
  • 1-2 tsp oregano
  • 2+ tsp cumin
  • cayenne (to taste)
  • pepper (to taste)
  • salt (to taste)
  • 2 Tbs sugar/1 packet stevia (I used stevia)

To cook the beans, start by soaking the beans in water 8-10 hours (I usually soak them over night).  For two cups of water, you will need 8 cups of water to soak.  Then, boil (in the soaking water) at a high boil for 10 minutes.  Then cover the beans and simmer at low heat for 1-2 hours.

Then, saute the vegetables (onion & pepper) in the mix of olive oil, wine, spice & garlic.  Add the cooked beans and, if needed, up to 1 cup of water.

Serve over brown rice (or white rice, quinoa or with whole wheat Saltines) and enjoy!

So for dinner, I had a bowl of the Cuban Black Beans with some whole wheat Saltines (I forgot to make rice because I was so excited about the smell), and a glass (or two) of the Cab Sav I opened Saturday night, (the rest was used in the beans!)

After dinner, I started soaking the pinto beans for Vegan Chili.

This morning consisted of a pb sandwich on whole wheat bread with an apple as pre-run fueling.  I then hit the pavement for an 12 mile run.  I finished in 2:18:– (I lost my Garmin cradle in the move (sadface), and thus I ordered one yesterday so I will soon be able to keep track of speed/distance again!).  It wasn’t my fastest run ever, but given the following conditions, I will take it: about 1/2 of my run was uphill.  Uphill as in one of the following, 1) gradual uphill, 2) steep uphill (mountain like), 3) straight up .  Since I’ve been running in the plains of Illinois for all my previous long runs, the hills took a serious toll.  The first 2 miles were gradual to steep uphill, then I had about 2.5 miles downhill, followed by about 4 miles of gradual uphill/flat, followed by about 2.5 miles steep uphill (with about a .25 mile straight up in there).  I then finished and realized I had only done 11 miles.  As such, I put my running shoes back on for a “quick mile” on “flat” ground.  Well, being as there is no such thing as a “flat surface” in my neighborhood, I had a .5 mile gradual uphill followed by .5 mile downhill.  Afterwards?  I felt like I had just run about 16/17 miles.

Post-run I had a delightful spinach salad with cucumber, carrots & tomato, topped with a red wine vinaigrette &  Chicken Tortilla Soup with tortilla chips and melted soy cheese.

Hours later, while slaving away over Vegan Chili & Vegan Chocolate Chip Cookies, my body still ached.

What did you do for Labor Day?  I  had a BBQ with some of my colleagues in my PhD program — it was a blast — we had tons of  food, and a good time.  But, more on that tomorrow.  Sweet dreams…of vegan chili & chocolate chip cookies…Mmmm…


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