Pinto Beans with Bacon, and stuff.
There is something to be said for the often bland and/or under appreciated Mexican side dish. When it comes to rice and beans, yeah, you can go with the standard Rosario’s canned re-fried beans, maybe mix in some cheese and peppers. Yippee.
Or, you can make these amazing pinto beans that your guest will not only remember, but rave about during the meal, and even better, quietly ask you for the coveted recipe.
Oh yeah, this is NOT one of our vegetarian recipes. I suppose it would be easy to make it vegetarian, but I wouldn't recommend it. Most of the flavor comes from the half pound of bacon that goes in it.
1 pound dry pinto beans
1 medium roasted onion, sliced
1/2 pound bacon
3 Serrano chili peppers, seeded
4 cloves of garlic, minced
2 tsp. dried cumin
2 tsp. dried thyme
1 tsp. salt
1 tsp. pepper
¼ cup cilantro chopped
Grated cheese to garnish
In a large mixing bowl, soak the pinto beans in room temperature water overnight.
When ready to prepare, drain the beans and set aside.
In a cast Dutch oven or heavy pot, stir the onions, bacon, garlic and peppers over medium high heat until onions are transparent and the bacon is crispy. Stir in the cumin powder and thyme.
Add the beans, 4 cups water and a pinch of salt. Increase heat to high, bring liquid to a boil. Decrease heat to medium or medium-low and cook for about 8-10 minutes or until the beans are tender, adding more water as needed.
Add salt and pepper to taste. I like to throw in a handful of chopped cilantro towards the last few minutes before serving.
Garnish with Queso Fresco, Cheddar or Parmesan cheese, cilantro, or fresh onions.