Black Beans And Brown Rice

Copyright 1994 The Chicago Tribune
From Knight-Ridder Newspapers/Tribune Information Services
Selected and Prepared by Tribune Media Services

By Steven Pratt
Chicago Tribune

At home I like to eat healthfully and simply. If that means cooking from cans, bottles
and boxes, what's wrong with that? Quick-cooking brown rice, for example, is as easy to
make as pasta, and more nutritious.

This recipe takes about 15 minutes to make and is about as healthful as you can get. It's a
one-dish meal that's high in protein, fiber, complex carbohydrates and vitamins while
being very low in fat. What's more, it's delicious.

Preparation time: 15 minutes
Cooking time: 15 minutes
Yield: 2 large or 4 small servings

Other ingredients such as chopped zucchini or eggplant or tomatoes can be added to this

1 tablespoon wine vinegar
2 teaspoons dried oregano
1 teaspoon ground cumin
2 cups water
1 cup instant brown rice, such as Uncle Ben's or Minute brand
1 green bell pepper, seeded, chopped
1 large onion, chopped
2-3 cloves garlic, chopped
2 cans (14 ounces each) black beans, undrained
2 jalapeno peppers, seeded, minced or 1 teaspoon jalapeno hot sauce, such as the Tabasco
2 tablespoons drained capers, optional
1 low-sodium beef or vegetable bouillon cube or 1 teaspoon instant beef or vegetable
bouillon powder, optional
Salt, freshly ground pepper to taste

1. Mix vinegar, oregano and cumin in a small bowl or cup and set aside to soak. Heat 2
cups of water in small saucepan. When water boils, add the instant rice, cover and
reduce heat; simmer 10 minutes.

2. Meanwhile, spray a 2-quart or larger heavy-bottomed saucepan (preferably non-stick)
with cooking oil spray. Add bell pepper, onion and garlic; cook and stir until tender,
about 3 minutes. When vegetables begin to brown, add black beans, jalapenos or hot
sauce, capers and bouillon cube, if using. Stir in oregano mixture; add enough water if
necessary to create a medium-thick sauce. Reduce heat to simmer.

3. When rice is done, fluff with a fork and let stand covered until beans are thoroughly
heated. Add salt and pepper to beans to taste. Serve separately or combined.

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