With the Christmas decorations down and the credit cards painfully paid off, it’s time to turn our heads to more pleasant thoughts. As we creep up on February, a whole lot comes with it:
- Valentine’s Day for you die-hard romantics and people with obscene amounts of disposable income
- Family Day, ‘cuz y’all know we couldn’t handle the New Year’s-Easter stretch without a long weekend
- And of course, for a good chunk of North Americans who keep their eyes glued to the screen all Sunday for weeks on end, the grand spectacle we al know as Super Bowl Sunday.
Now, ain’t no secret—a huge sports fan I am not—but a delicious spread is well within my abilities! Whenever I throw down, there’s all sorts of delicious goodies on the table, and Old El Paso wanted in on the spread for my fourth post in the Let’s Taco ‘Bout It series!
Old El Paso — Even for those of us a LITTLE too familiar with cooking FAILS.
So I decided to take adulthood a little more seriously in 2017.
I mean, you make some decisions as an adult because you have to—going to the job to put food on the table. Making sure your kids are clean, fed and healthy. Some things you know you need to do to keep life moving in a positive direction, but others tend to feel so much more… optional. Like going to the gym regularly. Taking your vitamins every day. Or, in my case, making cooking a part of your regular routine, no matter how much you might not feel like it.
When I put my 2017 resolutions together, I knew I’d need to deal with the elephant in the room. I always find plenty of things to fill my time—even now, I’m working on extensive content for Black History Month and Canada’s sesquicentennial—but focusing on these things alone would just be selfish. Who am I to deny my family delicious and nutritious food just because I don’t feel like it? And that’s why I took this Old El Paso challenge on with gusto.
With Old El Paso involved in the picture, we’ve found more and more ways to incorporate them in our spreads—build-your-own tacos at Christmas parties, double-layer tacos at toddler birthday parties… it always proved a recipe for success, so why not keep the good times rolling with a recipe for Black Bean Burrito Bowls courtesy of the good people at Simply Recipes?
Black Bean Burrito Bowls in Old El Paso Tortilla Bowls
- 1 pound dry black beans
- 2 Tbsp olive oil
- 1 Tbsp ground cumin
- 4 bay leaves
- 2 teaspoons Kosher salt
- 3 cloves garlic, minced
- 3 cups, uncooked rice, white or brown
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 4½ to 6 cups of water, depending on the type of rice (read package)
- Sliced red cabbage
- Ripe avocado, peeled and cut into chunks
- Old El Paso Thick N’ Chunky salsa
- Chopped fresh cilantro
- Queso fresco Mexican farmer’s cheese (or Cotija cheese) (skip if cooking vegan)
- Sour cream or crema fresca (skip if cooking vegan)
- Old El Paso Tortilla Bowls
Preparing dry beans
- Place black beans in a large bowl or pot. Cover with 2 inches of water, let soak overnight, then drain. You can skip overnight soaking, place black beans in bowl, and cover with 2 inches of boiling water. Let soak for one hour. Then drain.
- Place soaked and drained beans in a large pot. Cover with 2 inches of water. Bring to a boil, reduce to a simmer.
- While the beans are coming to a boil in step 2, heat 2 tablespoons of olive oil in a small pan on medium heat. Stir in the ground cumin and cook until fragrant, 1 to 2 minutes. Add the minced garlic, cook a minute more. Once the beans are boiling, add the cumin and garlic to the pot with the beans. Add bay leaves and salt to the pot as well.
- Cook the beans, uncovered, until tender, but not mushy, 30 minutes to 2 hours, depending on the size and age of the beans.
- When the beans are done, place a strainer over a separate pot. Pour the beans into the strainer, to collect the cooking water into the pot. Set aside the beans, and boil down the cooking liquid until thickened and slightly syrupy. Return the cooking liquid to the beans and stir.
Preparing the rest
- Place 3 cups of rice in a large saucepan. Depending on the type of rice you are using (short grain, long grain, white, brown) you will add anywhere from 4½ cup of water to 6 cups of water to the pot. Check the rice package instructions. Add ½ teaspoon of salt. Bring to a boil, lower the heat to low to maintain a very low simmer. Cover and cook from 15 minutes to 45 minutes, depending on the type of rice (again, check the package instructions for the rice you are using). Remove from heat and let rest for 10 minutes, covered, before fluffing with a fork to serve.
- To construct the burrito bowl, place a serving of cooked rice at the bottom of an Old El Paso Tortilla Bowl. Top with black beans. Top with assorted garnishes—thinly sliced cabbage, chopped avocados, chopped cilantro, queso fresco and sour cream.
CONTEST ALERT — Make Your Way to Game Day Deliciousness with Old El Paso’s Ultimate Game Day Giveaway!
So now that you’ve heard about what I’d make to feed hungry bellies, it’s your turn to take a shot at hosting a game day of your own!
That’s right—it’s a brand new year, and one lucky Canadian’s getting a $175 Ultimate Game Day prize pack from the Old El Paso posse, including a $150 Wal-Mart gift card and plenty of Old El Paso meal-starters to get you going! All it takes is a click and a valid email address to enter, but your odds always improve if you try your hand at some of the tasks I’ve put together for additional entries! Good luck to you all? (Contest open to Canadians aged 18+ living outside of Quebec, and closes February 15th, 2017 @ 11:59 PM ET.)
Old El Paso — Just what you need for that game-winning dish!
You don’t have to be an athletics aficionado to appreciate great game day grub—all it takes is a ravishing recipe and the willingness to put the time aside to make it happen!
We’ve come a long way since pork rinds—the food we snack on when waiting for the next touchdown need not be salty and yanked from a bag… the next time you want something special to impress your game-watching friends? Give Old El Paso a whirl. Trust me, they’ll thank you for it!
So keep life delicious and until the next, I remain,
Disclaimer: I wrote this as part of a year-long campaign with Old El Paso, weaving their line of Mexican cuisine-inspired products into my life’s stories and putting them on the blog for everyone to see. I’ve been compensated with food and funds.