Friday, February 24, 2012

Snazzed Up Beans and Rice

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It is crucial to my sanity to have a few easy meals that I can throw together when weeks like this week come roaring through.  We have been go. go, going all week.  It took me a few days (more like all week) to get my gears rolling and think ahead a day to dinner so I didn't find myself throwing a bunch of random veggies in a pan at 5pm and trying to come up with some way to present it to the family as dinner.  Although, it always seems to fly, and it's healthy.  I think I'd be pushing my luck if I tried it twice in one week though.

Beans and rice is always a simple, inexpensive go-to-dinner.  At one point in our marriage, I tried to pull the old boil in a bag rice and a can of beans about not flying.  The hubby just was not going for that one.  I used to get so aggrevated that he wasn't a eat-out-of-a-box kind of guy.  He was raised on "real" food...something I hadn't had too much experience in eating until I met him.  I can look back on that aggrevation now and be so glad he didn't cave, but, boy, did I want to throw a frying pan full of Hamburger Helper at his head a few times :)

So, now, if I am going to make beans and rice, it's from scratch.  What I love about this dish is that you can throw it all into a crock pot and let it go for the day.  Who doesn't love that?!?!


3 slices Bacon (Nitrate free)
1 small Onion, diced
1 Bell Pepper, diced
2 Celery Stalks, diced
3 large Carrots, sliced
1 head Garlic, finely chopped
1 can Tomato Paste (organic, look for BPA free lining)
2 cups Pinto Beans
8 cups Chicken Stock (organic, homemade if you have it)
1 Tbsp Sea Salt (start there and add more according to your taste)
1 tsp Cumin
Pepper to taste

1 1/2 cups Brown Rice (organic)
3 cups Water
1 tsp Sea Salt

Dump it all in the crock pot, turn and it on high.  Cook for at least 5 hours.  Give it a taste.  Add more salt and pepper if needed.

Note: If liquid gets too low at any point, add a little water.  All crockpots work differently, and you don't want it to dry out. 

An hour before serving, put rice, water and salt in a pot on high.  When it comes to a boil, lower tempature to low and put a lid on it.  Cook until all the water is absorbed into the rice.  Serve beans over the rice. 



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