It’s no secret to those who know me that I love my refried beans–we go through about 2 cans a week at our house. But despite my love and constant use of refrieds, I’d never attempted to make them from scratch. In fact, the thought never even really occurred to me. I mean, why change something that’s working right?
A few weeks ago, I was talking to some friends whose parents grew up in Mexico. Somehow, we starting talking about refrieds and I mentioned that I needed to go to the store and go buy a few more cans because I was almost out. They both looked at me like I was crazy and when I asked why, they said they didn’t even know refried beans came in cans! Every morning, their mom would put some beans and spices in a crock pot and let it cook all day to be ready to eat that night–every day! So I figured if they could do it every morning, I could manage it once in my life.
There’s really no recipe for these beans. I started off by boiling the beans, then covering them and letting them simmer for about 2.5 hours. Then, I drained them, sauteed half a yellow onion and lots of olive oil in the pot and added the beans back in. I tried mashing them together with a potato masher but wasn’t getting the consistency I wanted, so I took out the immersion blender which seemed to do the trick. Next, I added about 2 tablespoons of salt but the beans still tasted rather bland. So I looked on the ingredient list of my canned refrieds and started throwing in random spices, hence the fact that there’s no recipe! I added a little garlic salt, smoked paprika, chili powder, and even more regular salt–I think recipe’s like this really work out of for the best with just tasting and adding as you go.
If you’re interested, here’s the basic recipe I started with and then modified as the process went on.
Did you make anything new or unusual this weekend?