Sunday, July 18, 2010

Huevos Rancheros

One of our favorite family vegetarian dinners--which is amazing, I don't think we ALL agree on many dinners.

Not that huevos rancheros is that hard to make, but this one was kind of special, for a few different reasons.

First off: the beans. I did them in my slow cooker (after soaking the dried beans overnight), and they were the best beans I've ever made.

Cuban Black Beans

This is from a Betty Crocker Slow Cooker Cookbook. They don't have you soak the beans beforehand, but I don't think that would have turned out as good.
  • 1 pound dried black beans (about 2 cups)
  • 1 large onion, chopped
  • 1 large bell pepper, chopped
  • 5 cloves garlic, chopped
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 1 can diced tomatoes, undrained 
  • 5 cups water (I only did 3 or 4 cups since I'd soaked my beans)
  • 2 T olive oil
  • 4 tsp cumin
  • 2 tsp finely chopped jalapeno
  • 1 tsp salt
Mix all ingredients in slow cooker; cover and cook on high heat setting 6 to 8 hours, or until beans are tender and most of the liquid is absorbed. Remove bay leaves before serving. 

The salsa was a little special, too. Last summer, after canning almost an entire year's supply of tomato sauce and diced tomatoes (I only ran out a couple weeks ago, just in time for fresh tomatoes...), I still was getting too many tomatoes from my garden. Brenda and Tom had read to just freeze them whole and that they would thaw under hot water easily. So I froze a few gallon Ziplocs full and had yet to use them. I pulled out a bag and ended up making this salsa with them.

I let the tomatoes thaw slightly, and drain a little. I put garlic, jalapeno and onion into my food processor and chopped them pretty finely. Then I threw the tomatoes in, coarsely chopped, with cilantro and salt, and continued processing until it was the consistency of salsa I wanted (not very chunky, in this case). This made such good salsa! I couldn't believe how good the tomatoes still tasted--and they never got freezer burnt.

The last "special" ingredient was our sour cream...which wasn't sour cream. I had needed whey recently, and after draining the whey, you're left with what most people refer to as yogurt cheese. We were out of sour cream (quite a rarity, actually), but I subbed in the yogurt cheese and my sour cream loving children were none the wiser. Danny was actually surprised when I told him what it was.

To assemble our huevos rancheros, I spread the beans on a corn tortilla, sprinkle with cheese, add the egg (sunny side up is what our family likes), then top with salsa, sour cream and whatever other Mexican food type accompaniments we have on hand (avocados, this night).

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