Red Beans and Rice

This isn’t the first red beans and rice recipe I’ve posted, so you’ve already heard me say that I’m not a huge fan of them.  But my husband is and I love him, so I make stuff he likes.  I recently got the magazine that is The Best of America’s Test Kitchen 2011 and it was FULL of yummy looking recipes.  You’ll be seeing a lot of them on the blog in the future!

One of them was red beans and rice and I figured I’d try it, I already had the ingredients on hand so why not.  It really was easy to make, the only thing I should note is that where it says to cook 30 minutes, it took a lot longer than that for my beans to get thickened and creamy.  It took about twice that long, and that was only after I jacked up the heat.  So, you may want to try that.  Or maybe my stove has issues, who knows.  Either way, it was good….good enough that I had seconds 🙂

Red Beans and Rice
Recipe From:  The Best of America’s Test Kitchen 2011 – Cooks Illustrated

1 lb small red beans, rinsed and picked over
4 slices bacon, chopped fine
1 onion, chopped
1 small green bell pepper, seeded and chopped
1 celery rib, chopped
3 garlic cloves, minced
1 tsp chopped fresh thyme
1 tsp smoked paprika (it called for sweet, I had smoked)
2 bay leaves
1/4 tsp cayenne pepper
black pepper
6 cups water
3 cups chicken broth
8 ounces andouille sausage, halved lengthwise and sliced 1/4 inch thick
1 tsp red wine vinegar
Rice for serving
3 scallions/green onions, sliced thin for serving
hot sauce, for serving

Dissolve 3 tbsp salt in 4 quarts cold water in a large bowl.  Add the beans and soak overnight at room temperature.

Heat the bacon in a large Dutch oven over medium heat, stirring until the bacon is browned and crisp.  Add the onion, bell pepper and celery, cooking until they are tender then add the garlic, thyme, paprika, bay leaves, cayenne, and 1/4 tsp black pepper.  Cook until fragrant, about 30 seconds.  Stir in the beans, the 6 cups water and broth and bring to a boil over high heat.  Reduce heat and vigorously simmer, stirring occasionally until the beans are just soft and the liquid begins to thicken about an hour.

Stir in the sausage and red wine vinegar and cook until thick and the beans are tender and creamy, about 30 minutes (this is what I said took me about an hour).  Season to taste with salt and black pepper.  Serve over rice, sprinkle with scallions and hot sauce. 

Red Beans and Rice


2 responses to “Red Beans and Rice

  1. Hi Christen –

    My husband and I are displaced New Orleans natives and decided to give this recipe a shot tonight. I wasn’t terribly impressed! In fact, I thought it was bland and tasteless.

    To remedy, I added oregano, garlic powder, salt and a bit of white pepper… then stirred in a small bit of liquid smoke before serving. It was phenomenal.

    I had the same experience with the cooking time and did the same thing you did – jacked up the heat and left it on another 30.

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