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Rice Cooked in Black Bean Broth

April 21, 2010

When I first made Red Wine Spaghetti, a dish where pasta is cooked in a large portion of wine, I felt so guilty throwing out the red wine laden pasta water that I decided to save it instead.  I had no idea what I could do with this starchy pasta water, but I am just too darn cheap to throw that slightly used, previously owned, broken-in ingredient down the drain.

The Omnivore witnessed me holding the piping hot pasta pot of water over a tupperware.  He had a look of disbelief on his face that screamed, “What on earth has gotten into her?  She’s saving used pasta water?  I will buy her more wine.

And of course, I wouldn’t have let him buy me more wine: I had only slightly-dented wine in the freezer!  Throwing out that pasta water would have been foolish – it morphed into a delicious beef stew just days later.

Little did I realize that I had routinely been making a mistake as dreadful as throwing out red wine pasta water on a weekly basis.  You see, I rehydrate dried beans all the time.  And usually I rinse all that bean-juice away beans and store my beans in fresh water.  And it never crossed my mind to save that rather unappealing bean juice for another use.

But it crossed Deborah Madison’s mind.  And how delicious this was!  The simple addition raised regular brown rice to another level and this rice is a perfect accompaniment for Mexican main courses.  It totally complements rather than competes.

One Year Ago: Sweet Potato Gnocchi

Rice cooked in black bean broth (adapted from Deborah Madison)
1/2 cup onion, finely diced
1 cup brown rice (may use white rice)
2 minced garlic cloves
1/8 tsp anise seeds
2 1/4 cups broth from cooked black beans (reduce to 2 cups if using white rice)
1 cup crushed tomatoes (or diced, but crushed is preferred)

Heat a 3 q sauce pan and spray with nonstick cooking spray.  Saute onions over medium heat for 4 minutes.  Add rice, garlic, and anise.  Stir to coat rice.  Toast 3-4 minutes.  Add broth, tomatoes, 1/2 tsp salt, and bring to a boil.  Cover and cook over low heat for approximately 40 minutes (20 minutes for white rice) until water is absorbed.

Garnishes: scallions, diced tomatoes, cilantro, sour cream

4 servings
Calories 178.6
Total Fat 1.4 g
Potassium 197.4 mg
Total Carbohydrate 37.3 g
Protein 4.5 g

6 Comments leave one →
  1. April 21, 2010 11:01 am


  2. Bethany permalink
    April 21, 2010 11:39 am

    I’m puzzled by this. Isn’t the reason you rinse beans (at least the canned ones) to get rid of the stuff that makes you fart? I’m not sure I’m brave enough to ask you if the rice made you toot.

    • brannyboilsover permalink*
      April 21, 2010 11:55 am

      Hmm. I’ll just make a blanket statement here.
      I don’t remember an extraordinary tooting.

      • April 21, 2010 11:10 pm

        Hee. The more beans you eat, the less they make you toot. Your body is probably pretty well adapted to bean-eating.

  3. April 21, 2010 11:57 am

    I always keep the bean cooking liquid, and then a week later when I realize that I still have it in the fridge and never found a use for it, I throw it away. Sigh. I does seem so flavorful and thick and good, and I wish I always had something easy to do with it. Rice is a good idea; I’ll have to keep that in mind.

    Honestly, using an entire bottle of wine to cook pasta is exactly what would have kept me from making that dish. Being able to re-use the wine makes it much more acceptable.

  4. April 21, 2010 10:23 pm

    What a cool idea! And I’m sure the rice was quite tasty with that little trick too.

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