Friday, May 7, 2010

Black Beans in Mango Sauce

I discovered this recipe when I lived in California and was a vegetarian. I absolutely love mangos and black beans, so any combination of the two is a favorite in my book. It takes a little bit of time to chop up all the ingredients, but it is well worth it. I often serve it with corn cakes and it makes a perfect combination.

Black Beans in Mango Sauce

1 ½ T Olive Oil
2c Red Onion, minced
1T Garlic, minced
1 3-inch Jalapeno Chile, seeded and minced
1 ½ T Fresh Ginger, minced
1 ½ T Cumin Seeds
1 ½ T Salt
3 15oz cans Black Beans, rinsed and drained
6T Lime Juice
2 Large Mangos, chopped 
      Tip: I have found it easier to use frozen chopped mangos.
1t Ground Black Pepper
Fresh Cilantro, minced
1 Lime, cut into wedges

Tip: I use a small food processor to chop up the red onion, garlic, ginger, chile and cilantro. Make sure you chop them separately and clean the processor after each one.

Heat oil in medium sized skillet
Add 1 ¾ c of the onion, garlic, chile, ginger, cumin seeds and salt
Sauté over medium high heat from about 3 minutes

Turn heat down to medium low and add black beans and about half of the lime juice.
Sauté for 5 minutes or until everything has mingled nicely and the beans are heated through.
Mash the beans slightly with the back of the spoon and transfer to a serving bowl.

Stir the remaining lime juice and half the chopped mangos directly into the hot beans, mashing the mangoes a little as you stir.
Add the black pepper, cover and let stand for about 15 minutes to let the sauce develop.

Top the bean and mango mixture with the remaining red onion, mango and cilantro.
For finishing touch, tuck a wedge of lime into the side of each serving

Serves 6

Savory Corn Cakes

These corn cakes are light and perfect with Black Beans and Mango Sauce. I also pair them up with soup or a salad for a light meal. They are easy to make and I like to top the Corn Cakes with Chipotle Cream.

Savory Corn Cakes

2t Butter
¼ c Red Bell Pepper, finely chopped
2 c Fresh or Frozen Corn
¼ c Scallions, minced
½ c Corn Meal
½ c White Flour
1t Baking Powder
½ t Baking Soda
½ t Salt
2 Large Eggs
1c Buttermilk

Vegetable Oil or butter for pan

Melt butter in a small skillet.
Add the bell pepper and corn, sauté over medium heat for about 10 minutes.
Remove from heat, stir in scallions and set aside.

Combine the cornmeal, flour, baking powder, baking soda and salt in a medium-sized bowl.
Make a well in the center.

Beat together the eggs and buttermilk until frothy. Pour this and the corn mixture into the well in the center of the dry mixture.
Stir briefly until everything is combined. Don’t overmix.

Lightly grease a hot skillet or griddle with butter or oil.
Using a ¼ c measuring cup, pour batter on pan.
Fry corn cakes for about 2 minutes on each side, or until golden.

Serve hot, topped with a few cilantro leaves and a drizzle of room-temperature Chipotle Cream.

Makes about a dozen corn cakes.

Chipotle Cream

This goes great with the Savory Corn Cakes. It is creamy with just enough kick to make it interesting.

Chipotle Cream

1c Sour Cream or Plain Yogurt (or a combination of half and half)
½ to 1t Canned Chipotle Chiles, finely minced

Place the sour cream and/or yogurt in a small bowl and whisk until smooth

Whisk in ½ t minced chipotle chiles.
Let site for about 10 minutes so the flavor can develop.
Taste to see if it needs chipotles and adjust as desired.

Store in a tightly covered container in the refrigerator.
Bring to room Temperature before serving.

Makes 1 cup