Cuban black beans are known for their robust flavor and creamy texture. I had my first experience eating black beans in college, when my roommate’s mom Diane made these amazing black beans and other Cuban delicacies for us. I fell in love with Cuban food and have long waited the day where I could make her black beans. This recipe is not all the way there; I still need to figure out how to make it black beans as my beans look more like purple beans. But the taste is so close to what I remember eating all those many years ago.
I gave my 18-month toddler these beans over rice and she had several helping of it, so this is a certified toddler friendly meal. This is now comfort food for my family and I love making a large batch of it so that I can freeze some for later. I love that this a substantial side dish when coupled with rice and is great option for those with gluten intolerance. I hope you give this a try and like it as much as we do.
- 2 lbs Black Beans, soaked overnight
- 1 Bell Pepper, soaked in vinegar overnight
- 6 bay leaves
- 1 Onion, medium
- 8 Garlic Cloves, smashed
- 8 Garlic Cloves (additional) close roughly chopped
- 2 tsp Oregano
- 2 tsp Cumin
- 1 tsp Salt
- 2 tsp Whole Black Peppercorns
- 1/2 cup EVOO, or more according to taste
- 2 tbsp Balsamic Vinegar
- 1/4 cup White Vinegar
- 4 tsp Erythritol (alternative, add half as much sugar)
- 2 tsp Sugar
- 4 tbsp Sazon Completa (or more to taste)
- 4 packets Sazon Goya Culantro y Achiote
- Onions and Cilantro, for garnish
- Cover dry beans with water and let stand covered overnight. Drain and discard water.
- Cook beans in a pressure cooker. Follow the manufacturer's directions for exact times, but our pressure cooker takes about 20 to 25 minutes to cook the beans completely. Then turn off the burner and let the pressure subside.
- NOTE: Do not add salt to the beans when they are pressure cooking. Salt at this stage of the game will make your beans very tough.
- Do not drain the cooking water from the cooked beans. This becomes your soup base.
- While the pressure is reducing in the cooker, chop the onion and green bell pepper.
- Mash salt, peppercorns, and cumin in a mortar and pestle till you get a coarse mixture. Then add 8 cloves garlic and mash it into the spice mixture. It does not have to be a fine paste, just a coarse but even mixture.
- Open pressure cooker and if needed add water to adjust to desired consistency. You want it to be a bit liquid so that as it reduces over the next hour the beans soup will thicken.
- Turn the burner back on to high to return beans to a boil.
- Add mashed garlic mixture into pot with black beans
- Add the onion, peppers, and 8 roughly chopped garlic cloves into pot with cooked beans
- Add oregano, bay leaf, balsamic and white vinegar.
- Add 1/2 cup of EVOO, Sazon Completa and Sazon Goya
- Cover and simmer over med heat for an hour, stirring periodically. Remove bay leafs.
- Add additional salt and pepper to taste.
- Stir in the erythritol and sugar; then drizzle a couple of tablespoons of olive oil over the beans. Immediately cover the pot, remove from heat, and let stand for 10 minutes.
- Serve the by now fantastically prepared black beans over white rice.
- You may garnish the beans with cilantro and chopped white onions. Not only do they look good presented this way, they taste even better than they look.