Anyone else ready for summer? Don’t get me wrong, I love a good winter ski, snowmobile ride, or outdoor hot tub party, but I am missing the beach!
I grew up in a little town in Ontario where beaches are everywhere. In fact, my Grandparents (where I spent most of my time) live on a beach, my cottage is on a beach, and my high school was in 5 minutes walking distance to a beach. Geeze…just writing that makes me homesick!
Luckily, my vacation in Costa Rica brought some darn great ocean views. Tropical wise, I’ve only ever been to Cuba (two times) and Mexico, but Costa Rica has by far the best beaches.
To make me feel
sexy like a Costa Rican tropical again, I threw together this awesome Costa Rican meal! Saucy black beans, brown rice, and some scream worthy butter honey plantains. You need to make this. Like now.
Costa Rican Black Beans
Recipe adapted from Smells Like Home
Makes 6 servings
4 tsp canola oil
1/2 cup diced onion
2 fat cloves garlic, minced
1 tbsp tomato paste
2 bay leaf
2 cans (15 1/2 oz) of black beans, ( 1 can drained and rinsed, 1 whole can)
1 cup vegetable broth
1/2 tsp chili powder
1 tsp cumin
1/4 tsp oregano
Juice of 1 lime
Chopped cilantro (optional, for garnish)
Heat a medium skillet over medium heat, and add the canola oil. Once shimmering, cook the onion until translucent. Stir in the garlic, tomato paste, and bay leaf until the garlic is fragrant and the tomato paste has cooked off a bit, about 30-60 seconds.
Add the beans to the pan. One can should be drained and rinsed and the other should be put in juice and all. Using a wooden spatula or potato masher, smash the beans until about half are mashed up. Stir in the veggie broth, chili powder, cumin, and oregano. Your beans should be “soupy” and that is a GOOD thing! Simmer over low heat, stirring occasionally, until flavours meld and most of the broth has been absorbed, about 10 minutes. Stir in lime juice and season to taste with salt and pepper as needed.
If desired, sprinkle cilantro.
Butter Honey Plantains
A Warm Vanilla Sugar Recipe
1 ripe (almost black) plantain, peeled and sliced in 1 inch slices
2 tablespoons butter
Drizzle of honey
In a non-stick skillet over medium heat, melt butter.
Add plantains, in a single layer. Cook plantains on each side, for about 3 minutes, or until they reach a caramelized brown color. Drizzle with honey just before they are ready.
Transfer to a plate covered with paper towel and allow to drain for a minute.