Finally, I am getting around to posting a dish my husband made over three weeks ago! Sad, but true — I kept pre-empting his cooking with mine. Well, he was gone for two weeks of that time and figured he wouldn’t notice anyways. So this interesting and spicy gooey dish came about from a cookbook he gave me for Christmas called Make it Tonight: 150 Quick and Delicious Weeknight Recipes by Fine Cooking. The book is filled with eye-catching photos and simple one page recipes that can be made in a shortish span of time for a weeknight dinner. I’ve read the book through several times, and have bookmarked many recipes to try in the future. Although a majority of the recipes look tasty and easy, the Fine Cooking part should have tipped me off that there are a LOT of ingredients in there I just don’t have or keep stocked in the fridge or pantry on a regular basis (if at all, ever). Take this dish, for example. It calls for Salsa Lizano, “found in nearly every Costa Rican home, restaurant, and roadside food stand.” Seeing as we live approximately 4,219 miles from Costa Rica, we were hard-pressed to find this sauce. So we did the next best thing. We tried to make it ourselves. If I’d actually read the recipe closer I would have noticed to substitute Worcestershire sauce for it, but I went off on a tangent had husband add the ingredients that are in Salsa Lizano individually. From the sidebar: “Salsa Lizano is a smooth, light brown, vegetable-based sauce with a touch of sweetness and a hearty punch of spice, including cumin, mustard, and turmeric.” To me, that read: “Mix together soy sauce, a pinch of sugar, cumin, mustard, and ginger.” Hey, it turned out fabulous!
I now present to you this highly-adapted recipe from Fine Cooking. And my husband really did make this himself! I was the ingredient finder for him, as he didn’t know where to find most of the stuff in our jam-packed spice cabinet. And the bacon part is completely optional. This actually came from the Meatless Mains section of the book, but hubby loves his bacon! So do I.
Spicy Black Beans and Rice with Fried Egg and Bacon
6 strips of bacon
3/4 cup long-grain rice
1 tablespoon reserved bacon grease
1/2 cup chopped onion
2 teaspoons minced garlic
Pinch of sugar
1 teaspoon ground cumin
1 tablespoon soy sauce
1/4 teaspoon ground dried mustard
1/4 teaspoon ground dried ginger
1 small tomato, chopped
1/4 cup canned tomato sauce (freeze the rest)
1 cup homemade or low sodium chicken broth
1 can black beans, rinsed and drained
Ground black pepper, to taste
1 or 2 eggs per person
Fresh cilantro, for garnish
Fry up the bacon to make the house smell divine. Cook an extra strip or two for munching on while you make the rest of the dish. While the bacon is cooking, prepare rice according to package directions. Once your bacon is done, reserve 1 tablespoon of the bacon grease and add to a large deep skillet over medium heat. Add the onion and cook until softened, about 3 to 5 minutes. Add the minced garlic and cook for a minute more. Now add the sugar, cumin, soy sauce, mustard, ginger, and chopped tomatoes, and mix well. Next pour in the tomato sauce and chicken broth, then add the black beans and ground pepper to taste. Bring up to a simmer and cook for about 10 minutes or until the liquid reduces to the level of the beans, stirring occasionally. Turn off heat or to the lowest possible setting, and cover to keep warm. In another skillet, cook the eggs to your liking sprinkled with black pepper. We like ours over-easy, with the whites cooked through but the yolk runny in the middle. Add the rice/bean mixture to a bowl or plate, and top with an egg or two. Garnish with crumbled bacon and cilantro. Wow, this was really good!