These beans follow the "formula" I like, lots of flavor, a bit "saucy", but unlike most others I make that rely on a savory, these have a hint of sweet.
Welcome to Cuban Black Beans. Savory from green pepper, onion and garlic is balanced with sweet and tart from sugar, red wine vinegar and a splash of white wine.
I enjoyed them. Bo, not so much, but I wasn't surprised. He really doesn't care for sweet seeping into his main dishes. These will not become my "go-to" recipe for the lovely turtle beans since I always prefer bold over candied, but I can see them being made again in the "someday" of recipe-land.
Frijoles Negros - Cuban Black Beans (Adapted from Food and Wine)
1 pound dried black beans, picked over and rinsed
About 11 cups water
1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil
1/4-1/2 cup sofrito (I used this recipe from my freezer)
1/4 teaspoon dried oregano
1 bay leaf
2 tablespoons sugar
Freshly ground black pepper
2 tablespoons red wine vinegar
2 tablespoons dry white wine
In a large saucepan, combine the beans with 10 cups of water and the quartered green pepper and bring to a boil. Cover and remove from the heat. Let stand until the beans are softened, about 1 hour.
Return the beans to a boil and cook over very low heat until tender, 1 1/2 to 2 hours. Discard the green pepper.
In a skillet, heat the oil. Add the sofrito and cook until most of the liquid is gone.Using a slotted spoon, add 1 cup of the beans to the skillet and mash to a paste.
Scrape the paste into the beans in the saucepan. Add the oregano, bay leaf, sugar, 2 teaspoons of salt and 1/2 teaspoon of pepper. Add the remaining 1 cup of water, or enough to just cover the beans, and cook for 1 hour, stirring occasionally. Add the vinegar and wine and cook, stirring frequently, until the beans are thick, about 15 minutes longer. Discard the bay leaf and serve.