Red Eye Beans and Rice
Sep 11, 2007 by bartolimu | 1 Comments| Share it:
This is a combination of two Southern classics: red-eye gravy and red beans and rice. I have tried to stay true to the New Orleans style of red beans and rice, wherein creamy, savory beans are served over separately-prepared rice. This dish was my favorite of this submission, wonderfully rich with bits of crispy, blackened bacon and fresh bell pepper adding another level of texture to the experience.
- 4 strips of bacon
- 3 stalks of celery
- 3-4 cloves garlic
- 1 medium onion
- 1 bell pepper
- 1 can kidney beans
- 1 can red beans
- 1.5 cups brown rice
- freshly-brewed coffee
Chop bacon into roughly 1-cm strips and fry over medium heat in a deep frying pan or medium saucepan.
While the bacon starts to heat up, finely dice the celery.
Give the onion a medium-fine chop and the garlic a crush/fine chop.
When the bacon is just starting to release all its wonderful, glorious pig grease into the pan, but before it starts to brown significantly, it should look something like this:
At that point you should add the diced vegetables and a few generous grinds of black pepper.
Some may note a slight visual resemblance to the British classic Bubble and Squeak. Indeed, this preparation, if properly compacted, will itself bubble and squeak to a degree. Much like the British dish, you want to get some bits and pieces of this vegetable/bacon mixture to brown very dark, perhaps even begin to burn. When the vegetables have lost a significant amount of their volume and some have attained a crispy texture and dark color, add enough freshly-brewed coffee to cover the lot. Stir briefly, then cover and simmer at least one hour. Add more coffee as necessary to keep everything covered. The vegetables should break down somewhat, though not completely.
When they have reached appropriate doneness, open the cans of beans.
Pour the beans and their liquid into the pan with the coffee/vegetable mixture.
Simmer, covered, for at least 20 minutes. This would be a good time to start the brown rice which I somehow completely neglected to photograph.
About 20 minutes before serving, take your favorite mashing implement and smash about a quarter of the beans. This will both thicken the broth and give a wonderful creamy texture to the finished dish.
Leave the pan uncovered after doing this, and let the beans reduce slightly.
Put one serving (whatever that is for you) of brown rice into a bowl, then spoon the beans over the rice. Top with bits of raw bell pepper.
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