Authentic traditional Mexican beans- Frijoles autenticos Mexicanos is a basic recipe for Mexican beans. This dish is nutritious, easy to make, and so traditional that it cannot miss from a respectable Mexican table.
Frijoles or beans are a staple in Mexican cuisine.
Beans are a staple in Mexican cuisine, and it is one of these dishes that you expect to be served when you go to your grandma's house at the end of the week.
It is a simple but delicious dish that makes it successfully into the category of "comfort foods" and works even if you are not very skilled in the kitchen.
One of the secrets to this recipe is the epazote, a traditional Mexican herb used in many dishes around Mexico.
You can find it in some Mexican grocery stores, but you can also buy it dry or grow it in your garden.
Epazote is a herb that is also used as tea. It is supposed to help with digestion and reduce flatulence. Therefore, you can understand why it is used in bean recipes.
Beans are a beautiful source of low-fat protein and fiber, which we already know that it helps lower cholesterol and stabilize blood sugar.
It doesn't matter what you use in this basic recipe, black, red, white, or pinto beans. This recipe is incredibly cheap to make, as beans are usually very affordable.
One pound of dry beans equals about three cans of beans, which would each cost you more than a dollar. It might even cost you more than $2 if you go for organic cans of beans.
I am sure that many people might use cans of beans to make a quick meal. I use them too because they are already cooked, and I can save a lot of time, but the truth is that nothing compares with the slow cooking process of homemade stuff.
Frijoles or cooked beans are a dish you might get during the weekend when you visit your mom or your grandma (tu abuelita). It feels comforting, safe, and plain awesome, and nothing can beat that.
How to make these authentic traditional Mexican beans- Frijoles autenticos Mexicanos:
There is some planning with this recipe, as you need to soak the beans in advance overnight and then cook them for about an hour and a half on the stove. Besides the planning, it is really as easy as boiling water.
You can also skip the overnight soaking process, but you will have to increase the time of boiling the beans by about 30-45 minutes.
Before you start cooking the beans, take a quick look at them and make sure they don't have any stones or other foreign objects among them.
Wash them in warm water a few times, then place them in a pot with water.
Add the onion that you cut into big chunks and garlic cloves. Also, bay leaves and a little bit of dried Mexican oregano.
Cover the pot and cook them until they are soft. The cooking time will vary based on how fresh or old the beans are. They usually need about 90 minutes to two hours.
It is traditional to add the epazote when ready, just a few minutes before removing the beans from the heat. Add salt and pepper to your taste and serve with anything you like.
There is this myth that you have to add salt only at the end of the cooking process, as the beans will not cook properly if the water is salty. I am not sure if this is true or not.
I cook beans quite often and add salt at the beginning of the process because I think the beans get more flavor from it. They also cook fine.
To make sure your beans are cooked thoroughly, scoop up a couple of beans and blow on them. The skin should curl and wrinkle. Then taste them.
They are done when tender and cooked through to the center (but not mushy). Let them cool in their cooking liquid.
It was divine! It's simple and delicious, and I really hope you will make these frijoles once in a while and ditch those cans of beans you have in the pantry! For those, try this quick recipe for Pinto Bean Salad.
More recipes to love:
Authentic Traditional Mexican Beans- Frijoles Autenticos Mexicanos
- 1 lb/454g dried beans pinto, black, white, or any other favorite variety
- 1 medium onion chopped
- 2 garlic cloves
- 1-2 bay leaves
- ½ teaspoon dried Mexican oregano
- 12 cups/3 liters water
- 1 bunch epazote
- 1 tablespoon salt
- Optional for serving:
- Queso fresco
- Mexican Cream
- Check for a date on the beans; freshness matters. Dried beans last up to two years, but are best cooked within a year of harvest.
- Always rinse beans before cooking, and check for stray rocks, twigs and leaves.
- Wash them well and place them in a pot with clean water to soak over night. Next day, drain the water and put fresh water over them, then continue with the recipe.
- If you do not want to let them soak overnight, place the chopped onions, salt and garlic together in the pot, cover it with a lid and bring it to a boil.
- When the beans start boiling, reduce the heat and let them simmer for about 90 minutes to 2 hours until the beans are soft. The time varies based on the type of beans or how dry they are.
- Make sure that there is enough water during the cooking process. There should always be liquid covering your beans as they cook.
- To make sure your beans are cooked thoroughly, scoop up a couple of beans and blow on them. The skin should curl and wrinkle. Then taste. They are done when they’re tender and cooked through to the center (but not mushy). Let them cool in their cooking liquid.
- Before removing the beans from the heat, add the epazote.
- Serve them with salads, rice, warm corn tortillas, grilled meats etc.