Sunday, July 12, 2009

Black Bean Salsa

All The Colors Of The Rainbow
Black Bean Salsa

In the spirit of summer I am going to post the much-requested recipe
for colorful black bean salsa.

Oh my is it addictive.

The usual suspects: black beans, mandarin oranges, Adobo sauce, fresh produce, spices.

Admire your still life.
Snap back to reality when your husband asks "What's for lunch?"

Rinsed, drained black beans.
When you rinse, the beans lose some of their musical properties.
I think you understand what I mean.

Add the Mandarin oranges and all of the orange liquid.

Watch your manly husband's forearms
as he squeezes a couple of limes - or three.


Cautiously add some Adobo sauce.
The adventurous may add a minced Chipotle as well.


There's no salt in this recipe. The Adobo sauce is plenty salty.
Trust me.

Rough chop the produce. Pretty, pretty produce.

Hooray, it's salsa!

Garnish with lime wedges, yummy, yummy.

*My lips are tingly.
Is that the salsa or are you just happy to kiss me?*

Black Bean Salsa Recipe

1 Can black beans, 15 - 16 oz.

1 Can Mandarin oranges in light syrup, 15 - 16 oz.

1 Can Adobo sauce or Chipotle peppers in adobo sauce

Juice of 2 Limes and 2 or 3 limes for garnish

Bunch cilantro

Red bell pepper, 1 or 2 depending on size

Orange or yellow bell pepper

3 or 4 ribs Celery

Green onions (you will use the tops)

Red onion

1 tbl. Minced garlic

2 tbl. Cumin powder

In a large bowl: Rinse and drain a can of black beans. Any brand you have in the pantry is fine. All I had on hand was a can of seasoned black beans. No big thing. Just rinse and move on.

Add the Mandarin oranges including the syrup. The syrup is necessary to balance out the spicy Adobo sauce. You could substitute fresh, seeded tangerine sections if you want. Or blood orange. Or even grapefruit. If you go with fresh fruit, please add 1 cup fruit juice and 1 tsp. sugar.

If you are lucky enough to live near a market that stocks Adobo sauce, lucky you! Open the can and add a small dollop to your beans and oranges. If your market is like mine, you can’t get that but you will find a can of Chipotle peppers in Adobo sauce on the ethnic food aisle. Start by adding 1 tbl. or so (small dollop) of the sauce. Adjust to taste. Be careful with the Chipotle peppers, they are hot! I generally scoop out one plump looking Chipotle and carefully cut it down the middle. Then I use a spoon to scoop all the seeds out of the pepper. And then I mince it really finely, before adding the pepper to the salsa. If you choose to eliminate the Chipotle from the salsa altogether, I won’t judge you. Mix and check for spiciness.

Squeeze in the juice of two limes. Add more if they’re on the small side. The tart, limey taste is awesome in this salsa.

Now rough chop your colorful produce. You can get all the pieces perfectly symmetrical if you’re compulsive that way. But this is a casual-dining dish, perfect for a backyard barbeque. Rough chop all of the cilantro, bell peppers and celery. The green onions are for color more than taste so you can chop the tops and reserve the bulbs for another use if you want. Red onion to taste. If the onion is mild I use the whole onion.

Finally, add the minced garlic and cumin to taste. We really like cumin. We add a lot...and then add some more.

Mix and serve. Tastes better with a couple of hours for the tastes to meld but also just fine to eat right away. This salsa is great with chips, as a topper for a quesadilla or as a stand-alone cold salad with grilled chicken or beef. Serves: a lot.


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