I've been coming at you with a bunch of really simple recipes as of late, which can also give you insight into my life as of late. Not that I've been overly busy, no, I just have been taking more advantage of these longer, warmer, days and spending some time outdoors after work instead of in front of the stove. Tonight I tried this, knowing full well that it was supposed to rain, and I found out that weather doesn't really work like the movie The Day After Tomorrow; you can't outrun it. If it's raining at home, it's raining by the river.
That's the great thing about the warmer months isn't it? Not the rain, although it ain't bad. No, the great thing is simple, delicious meals and time spent outdoors. Save that 3 hour chili for the winter when you need the stove to keep your apartment warm. Oh, you don't use your oven/stove to heat your apartment? Weird.
Let's take advantage of this time of year and make something simple!
Start with diced tomatoes and green chilies (like Ro-Tel) and a can of black beans, drained and rinsed. Just the tomatoes are pictured, sorry.
Season with salt, pepper, cumin, and red pepper flakes and cook for about 10 minutes, until completely heated through. Then add beans to an oven-proof crock and top with shredded cheese.
Pop that into a 400 degree oven and cook until the cheese is melted and bubbly. Meanwhile, assemble your toppings!
Sour cream is mixed with lemon zest and lemon juice to give it a little citrus zing.
Tomatoes are chopped and avocados are sliced.
When the cheese is melted on the beans, remove from the oven.
Top with your toppings! I put on a couple of slices of avocado, some chopped fresh tomatoes, and some of the lemon sour cream.
Serve with some warmed tortillas or chips, or just as they are. The beans are flavorful and comforting and the cheese is kind of toasty on top, which pairs perfectly with the cool sour cream, avocados and fresh tomatoes.
A little added hot sauce on top never hurt anyone either, unless you don't like spicy things--it might actually hurt you. Know thyself!
The topping choices are endless too--throw some of feta cheese on top for a riff on my new favorite quesadillas! Fresh cilantro would also be amazing. But that's me. I love cilantro and I love feta cheese. Really, do whatever pleases you. Just keep it simple, keep it light, and run in the rain if you want to! It's actually pretty fun.
Here's the recipe!
Baked Black Beans (Adapted from Bleubird Vintage)
- 1 can diced tomatoes with green chilis (Ro-Tel)
- 1 15-ounce can black beans, drained and rinsed
- Salt and Pepper
- 1/2 teaspoon cumin
- Pinch of red pepper flakes
- 1/4 cup shredded cheese
- 1/4 cup sour cream
- 1 lemon (for zest and half of the juice)
- 1 avocado, sliced
- 1 Roma tomato, diced
- Hot sauce for serving (optional)
- Tortillas for serving (optional)
- Preheat oven to 400 degrees.
- In a medium sized pot over medium heat, add canned diced tomatoes and drained and rinsed black beans. Season with salt, pepper, cumin, and red pepper flakes and stir to combine. Cook for about 10 minutes, stirring occasionally, until completely heated through.
- Spoon beans into some oven proof crocks and top with cheese. Place in the oven and cook until the cheese is melted and bubbly, about 7-10 minutes.
- Meanwhile, prepare your toppings. Mix sour cream with lemon zest and half of the lemon's juice. Stir together and taste. Add more lemon juice if you want it to be more lemony. Chop the tomatoes and slice the avocados. You're ready for beans!
- When the beans are ready, remove from oven and top with the avocado slices, chopped fresh tomatoes, and lemon sour cream sauce.
- Serve with warm tortillas or tortilla chips, or leave them as they are!