Updated: Jan 3, 2021
This meal is full of flavor, filling and not too time consuming to make. You will have leftovers too, which is always a plus.
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Wash and chop your vegetables. You want to cut them fairly small for this dish. You will be adding them all into your dish before your rice.
Melt butter and olive oil in a pan on medium heat. Add in red onion and peppers and sauté, stirring often. As the vegetables soften, add in garlic. Let the garlic cook about a minute, stirring often. Add in tomato paste (check out my tomato paste story and my escape from injury) and allow it to fry. After about a minute, add in your chopped escarole and peas and stir often (see video).
Add uncooked white rice and allow to fry, stiring to incorporate all flavors. (see video) Once the rice toasts, add in vegetable broth (add whatever amount the rice package suggests in liquid according to the amount of rice you are using). Bring to a boil, reduce heat, cover and let simmer or stand (depending on package instructions)
When the rice is fluffy, stir, add roasted red pepper dressing. Mix well. Allow to sit, covered, while you make the refried beans. (see video)
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Funny Story: I was about 20 years old. I'd never eaten Mexican food before. A group of about 25 friends and cousins, both singles and couples, went out to a Mexican restaurant.
When they placed my meal down, unbeknownst to me, it came with refried beans and rice. I still remember my cousin's friend's laughter as he looked at my expression. Let's just say, the food didn't look appetizing. He laughed so hard, he couldn't eat.
He told me what it was and suggested I to try it. It was delicious. I'm happy to say, I've since had amazing Mexican food, IN Mexico. Authentic Mexican in Tulum and Akumal, is delightful. Not the tourist traps, I'm talking real Mexican, where the tourists don't go and the locals do!
Refried Beans Recipe:
Chop red onion and add to heated cast iron pan coated in a little bit of olive oil. Cook on medium heat. As they soften, add chopped garlic. Add pinto beans, undrained (you want the liquid). Cook until beans are softened, stirring often. If they get a bit too dry before they are soft enough, add some liquid (water or vegetable broth) (see video)
Add Sazon Goya seasoning. Stir often. Allow to simmer approximately 10 - 15 minutes.
When the beans are mushy, turn off heat and smash to desired texture (see video). Some like their refried beans slightly chunky, others prefer completely smooth. The choice is yours.
Serve rice with refried beans atop. Full of flavor, creamy, tangy and delicious. Everyone enjoyed it. I even got my husband to actually eat forbidden vegetables. I snuck them in!
The rice and refried beans refrigerate well. The rice can be used with many dishes or as a side dish. You can heat up the next day and enjoy the refried beans with flatbread. For flatbread recipe, click green link.
It's a delicious dish and full of protein (see why I don't eat meat).
Vegetable broth (gluten free)
Peppers (red, orange, yellow, green)
Annies Gluten free roasted pepper dressing
Sazon seasoning by Goya (gluten free)