Nowadays, modern cooks prepare the rice and beans together, but in the traditional Cuban manner, the rice and beans are cooked separately and the Moors (beans) don’t encounter the Christians (rice) until they meet on your plate. Both methods are great, though we prefer the sharper, more distinct flavors the old-fashioned technique delivers.
Serves 2 to 4
- 4 lean bacon slices, chopped
- Extra-virgin olive oil, as needed
- 1 white onion, diced
- 2 garlic cloves, smashed
- 1 green bell pepper, seeded and deveined, then diced
- 1 teaspoon Rancho Gordo New Mexican Red Chile Powder
- 1 teaspoon dried Mexican oregano, preferably Rancho Gordo Oregano Indio
- 2 cups cooked Rancho Gordo Midnight Black beans in their broth
- 1½ cups warm cooked white rice
- Lime wedges and hot sauce, for serving
- In a large saucepan over medium-low heat, gently cook the bacon until the fat is rendered and bacon is cooked through, about 10 minutes. You should have about 2 tablespoons fat. If there is less, add oil as needed.
- Add the onion, garlic, and bell pepper; cook gently, stirring occasionally, until the bell pepper is soft, about 8 minutes. Add the red chile powder and oregano; stir until incorporated. Add the beans and their broth; stir gently until combined. Reduce heat to low; cook, stirring occasionally, for about 10 minutes to allow flavors to mingle. Taste and adjust seasoning, as desired.
- Spoon some of the rice and the beans alongside each other on individual plates. Serve immediately with limes and hot sauce.