Black beans with coriander
( SERVES 4 )
Photo by Tamara West
Black beans (also known as black turtle beans) are small but packed with flavour. I like to keep these really simple and just pair them with coriander, using lots of the seeds and serving with the leaves. My favourite way to eat these is to appreciate their status as a staple food, putting them beside rice on a plate with some finely chopped lettuce and tomato, with a spoonful of hot salsa on top.
- Grind the coriander seed in a mortar and pestle or spice grinder, then add to a heavy pan on a medium heat and allow to toast for a few seconds before adding the oil and onion.
- Cook the onion and coriander for about 5 minutes to soften, then add salt, pepper and the black beans with their juice.
- Reduce heat to low and simmer for 15 minutes to allow the flavours to meld. Mash gently with a fork so some beans are nicely squished while others stay whole.
- Sprinkle with chopped coriander leaves to serve.
How to cook black beans
Soak a 500g bag of black beans (available at speciality and whole food stores) for at least a couple of hours in lots of cold water. Drain then put in a heavy pot with about 3 litres of water. Bring to a boil then reduce heat to lowest and simmer until cooked soft, at least 1 hour. Remove from heat, add ½ tablespoon salt and leave to steep for an hour or two (or overnight). This makes the equivalent of 4 cans of beans for about $4 worth of dry beans, and you can easily freeze half to use later.
Check out Ray McVinnie's video on 'How to cook the perfect white rice'.