Rice and beans, or arroz con habichuelas, is one of the most common staple dishes in Puerto Rico, paired with practically any main dish you could think of. Growing up, we all ate rice and beans with dinner AT LEAST every other night!
While beans are native to the Americas, rice was introduced to the Caribbean from Africa and Asia during Spanish colonization in the 16th century. Funny enough, rice and beans didn’t come to occupy a prominent place in the local diet until much later, when Puerto Rico came under American influence in the last century. Before Puerto Ricans had traditionally consumed dishes of mashed roots or plantains. The rapid industrialization of the 1950s brought about the first significant shift in what had been the traditional diet of the population. As farm laborers left the fields and poured into cities and factories, the government was pressed with finding a quick and easy food supply. The answer was canned beans! Today’s rice and beans have definitely spiced things up, adding sofrito, tomato sauces, and lots of other yummy goodies!
Our recipe is a healthier take on the staple plate, made with quinoa and black beans. We hope you enjoy it, buen provecho!
BLACK BEANS AND QUINOA
- 1 can of black beans
- 1 cup white quinoa
- 1/2 small yellow onion
- 1 small clove of garlic
- fresh cilantro
- salt and pepper to taste
- Thinly dice garlic and onion
- Saute in 1 tablespoon of extra virgin olive oil
- Prepare the quinoa as you would regularly but substitute 1/2 cup water for can of beans (with liquid).
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