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Carne Asada and Charro Beans (Frijoles Charros) will show up together most of the time at an evening outdoor party in the Northeast region of the country where I am from. It just takes a couple of phone calls from relatives, friends or “compadres” to organize a plan to see who will bring in the steaks, drinks, salsas, guacamole, tortillas, onion and the charro beans pot. And if you add a cup or two of beer to the pot of charro beans they become “frijoles borrachos” (drunken beans). Steak house restaurant will bring this soup to your table before your meat dish without you even asking for it. The soup by itself is a hearty dish to have in a cold day.
Here is a basic recipe the way I prepare Frijoles Charros in my kitchen, you can add other meats to the soup, that is what must cooks do, right? Personalize and adjust to your taste. Sometimes I add pork rinds or sliced hot dogs sausages, too.
6 cups of already cooked pinto beans with their broth **
¼ onion chopped
2 garlic cloves chopped
3 ½ oz. chorizo
3 ½ oz. bacon chopped
2 large tomatoes chopped ( about 2 1/2 cups)
2 serrano peppers chopped
1 cup of cilantro chopped
3 ½ oz. cooked ham chopped
Salt to taste
Note: Some cooks also add pork rinds in small pieces.
** Cooking the beans:
To cook the beans place 2 cups of dry beans, 1/4 of a medium white onion, 2 peeled garlic cloves and 8 cups of water in a large pot. Cook for about 2 hours or a little bit longer until they are tender. Soaking the beans overnight will speed up this process. I usually use my pressure cooker and they are done in 30 minutes.
1. Place the beans and its broth in a large stock pot and set aside.
2. Fry the beacon and chorizo in a skillet at medium heat for about 10 minutes. If you prefer cook the bacon first until it gets crispy and remove the fat, then add the chorizo to cook with the bacon. I just like to cook them together. At this time add the ham or other meats if using them.
3. After 5 minutes add the onion, garlic and pepper and fry for 2 more minutes.
4. Stir in the Chopped tomato and cook, stirring occasionally for an additional 8 minutes.
5. Once the tomato has released it juices stir in this mixture to the pot with the beans. And simmer for about 15 minutes, to blend the flavors. Add water if necessary. The consistency shouldn’t be thick.
6. Add salt — to adjust taste — and chopped cilantro right before serving.
Serve in large bowls and warm tortillas.
This week sharing at Sunday Night Soup.