Frijoles, Mexican Beans

By Mark Lawrence

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Frijoles (Free-hole-ace) are pinto beans cooked in the Mexican style. They're a staple of the N.Mexican diet. Making them at home is very easy, and about 300 times better than what you get in a can.

1 pound pinto or black beans
6 cups water
1 mediumonion
3 clovesgarlic
1 to 4 jalapeno peppers
2 tbl lard or vegetable oil

  1. Remove seeds from jalapenos. Chop the onion, jalapeno and garlic into very small pieces.

  2. Rinse the pinto beans several times under cold water until the water comes out clear.

  3. Place all the ingredients into a large pot or crock pot. Heat to boiling. Lower heat to a slow simmer. Cook for 4-6 hours. Just before serving, boil off most of the remaining liquid.

  4. Optional: lightly mash some or all of the beans with a potato masher or a large fork

  5. Optional: fry a couple cups of the beans at a time in lard or cooking oil for a few minutes (refried beans)

To mince the garlic: place the garlic cloves on a cutting board, and place the flat of a large chef's knife on a clove, then hit the other side with your fist. Peal the clove (it will be easy now). Place the pealed cloves near each other on the cutting board, hold the tip of the chef's knife on the board with one hand about 3" away from the cloves, and rock the blade up and down repeatedly. The edge of the knife is always touching the cutting board, you can't possibly get cut.