I accidentally discovered how fantastic a dried chipotle pepper is in a pot of black beans. I wanted to try cooking black beans in my slow cooker in order to use them in simple, quick & easy recipes, rather than opening a can of beans. This is easier than opening a can of beans, except that you have to do it ahead of time. I was afraid to salt the beans too early because I was afraid the salt would make them tough. But I wanted the beans to absorb some kind of flavor as they were cooking, so that they would not be too bland. These actually turned out to have quite a bite to them, probably because the dried pepper I used was quite large. Use a larger pepper if you like spicy hot food, or a smaller pepper if you prefer a milder flavor. In any case, these beans have great flavor for use in mexican-style recipes. Tomorrow I will post a simple quesadilla recipe using them. You could also try them in tacos, bean dips, or whatever mexican-style foods you like. If you have a mexican-style recipe you like that uses meat, try substituting these beans for the meat for greenplanet eating!
1 cup dried black beans
12 cups water
1 large dried chipotle pepper
1 onion, cut in half
Put all ingredients in slow cooker and cook on high for 6 hours. Add 1 tsp salt after 3 hours. Remove onion and pepper. Drain to use in recipes.
Tip: If you don't use them all the first day, spread the remaining cooked beans on a parchment-paper lined baking sheet and freeze them. Once they are frozen, transfer them to a container in the freezer. You can easily take out small portions of beans for quick and easy snacks or meals.