Savory Saturdays: Borracho (Drunken) Beans

I am not Hispanic, but growing up in Texas gave me more than just an appreciation of their beauty, language and culture. When I think of my childhood, I think of pinatas and cascarones. I think of celebrating Cinco de Mayo. I remember going to my friends’ houses and smelling the most amazing mixtures of spices and watching in awe as moms cooked with grandmas to make generations-old recipes. Most of all I remember the feeling of being included in big family celebrations. My mother acquired an amazing ability to duplicate many of these recipes. Christmas, Easter and sometimes Thanksgiving were mini fiestas at our house. The rooms brimmed with friends and families, mingling in between the smells of fresh cilantro and spicy meats.

One dish that has always been my favorite is this one. There was a restaurant close to our house that served one of the best, but I really think this recipe comes pretty close to what I remember. It is traditionally served in a small cup or bowl, more like a soup. I hope you enjoy the way it makes your whole house smell by the end of the day.

Borracho (Drunken) Beans

1 pound dried pinto beans, washed
2 quarts chicken stock
1 Tablespoon salt
1/2 Tablespoon ground black pepper
1 (12 fluid ounce) can or bottle of dark beer
2 (14.5 ounce) cans chopped stewed tomatoes
1 white onion, diced
1/4 cup pickled jalapeno peppers
6 cloves garlic, chopped
3 bay leaves
1 1/2 Tablespoons dried oregano
1 1/2 cups chopped fresh cilantro

You would probably want a darker beer but this is what I had on hand.

Directions:

  1. Soak beans in a large pot of water overnight.
  2. Drain beans, and refill the pot with chicken stock and enough water to cover the beans with 2 inches of liquid. Season with salt and pepper. Cover, and bring to a boil. Reduce heat to medium-low, cover, and cook for 1 1/2 hours. Stir the beans occasionally through the entire cooking process to make sure they do not burn or stick to the bottom of the pot.
  3. Stir beer, tomatoes, onion, jalapeno peppers, garlic, bay leaves, oregano, and cilantro into the beans. Continue to cook uncovered for 1 hour, or until beans are tender.
  4. With a potato masher, crush the beans slightly to thicken the bean liquid. Adjust the seasonings with salt and pepper to taste.

Prep Time: approximately 30 minutes.
Cooking Time: approximately 3 hours.
Makes 12 servings.

*This recipe was found at all recipes

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