Tuesday, August 6, 2013

easy homemade refried beans

I LOVE refried beans. When I was a kid, the though of eating beans, any beans, was gross to me. I first began to enjoy them in chili, then maybe some in other soups where the bean flavor was more distinguishable, but now... now I love beans. And refried beans are the best.
I've thought about making refried beans in the past, but this is the first time I've really had a go at it. I've combined a recipe I found in a Pampered Chef cook book and what I recently saw on an episode of Pioneer Woman to make this one. What you see above is vegetable oil combined with a dollop of bacon fat. Yes, bacon fat. Recently, when I've been frying bacon, I've been reserving the bacon fat for use later. It's good for up to a week in the fridge, so I have to use it fast, but that's not usually a problem. You can always just use all vegetable oil.
Add two whole cloves of garlic to the hot oil and let them brown on each side. The aroma will be amazing.
Once the garlic is fully browned, smash is completely with a fork.
Add in the beans, compete with liquid, cumin, salt and chili powder. Let this cook for about 5 minutes, stirring frequently.
Something that would have made my life easier here would have been a masher, but a fork worked just fine. Smash as much or as little as you would like- I kind of like my refried beans a little chunkier so that's what I went with. You can squeeze in some lime if you would like, but these are awesome just as is. You can also use other beans than black beans, or go through all the work of sorting, soaking and cooking the beans first, but this is the easier way, I think.
Easy Refried Beans
1 15 oz can black beans
2 cloves garlic
2 Tablespoons vegetable oil or 1 Tablespoon vegetable oil and 1 Tablespoon bacon fat
1/2 Tablespoon cumin
1/2 Tablespoon chili powder
1 teaspoon salt

Heat oil or oil and fat in a cast iron skillet or pan over medium heat. When oil is up to temp, drop garlic into the pan and cook on either side until browned. Smash garlic with a fork to break apart. Add in can of beans, complete with juice, the cumin, chili powder and salt. Cook over medium heat for 5-6 minutes. Remove from heat and smash with  fork or masher to desired consistency. Enjoy!