Monday, June 20, 2011

Homemade Spicy Refried Beans

We love mexican at our house! Since the hubs is from Arizona he is a little more particular about his mexican - he whines that it isn't that authentic when we go places in Minnesota... Shocking that we don't have authentic tasting mexican in Minnesota! :) When we go while we are in Arizona one of my favorite sides is refried beans. So, when I found this recipe and it looked a little healthier then refried beans usually are (when they are all cooked up with lard...), I wanted to try it! Of course Josh ended up not being home the night that we had it, so he can't weigh in on how good or bad they were, but my dad and I thought they were pretty dang good!! We had them as a side dish to my cheesy chicken enchiladas!

Big warning attached to this recipe - these really are spicy!! I mean, this is not just part of the title - they are making your mouth burn spicy! I took a taste when I had them ready and realized immediately that these were not going to go over well with the kids and I was right on! Brody took the one bite that I gave them all and drank all of his milk in one gulp... Beau took a bite and spit his back out and Bella proceeded to grab her tongue for the next five minutes. Although the reactions were amusing, I didn't make them have anymore...

So, the moral of this warning is - you might want to tame it down a bit if you don't like spicy foods... I cut the red crushed pepper in half and it was still this spicy. I liked it, but if I was going to make it again for the kids I would tone it down a lot more.

Homemade Spicy Refried Beans
(recipe found at

2 1/2 cups dried pinto beans
3 quarts water for cooking the beans, plus 1 cup for mashing the beans
2 tablespoons olive oil
1 cup onion, finely chopped
2 tablespoons red pepper flakes
1 tablespoon paprika
1 teaspoon cayenne pepper
2 teaspoons salt
shredded cheddar cheese, to serve

Rinse the dried beans in water, making sure to get rid of any dirt that might be hanging out. Add the beans to a large pot and cover with water. (Make sure there is about 4 inches of water above the dried beans, they will soak up a lot of water.) Bring water to a boil, cover and reduce to a simmer. Cook beans for 2 1/2 hours.

Once the beans are cooked, drain the excess water and set aside. In a large skillet add the olive oil over medium high heat. Saute the onions along with the red pepper flakes, paprika and cayenne pepper for about 5 minutes. Add the drained beans and 1 cup of water. Using an immersion blender (or I used a hand mixer), lightly blend the beans until they have a consistency of mashed potatoes. Season with salt as needed. Serve with cheddar cheese.

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