If ever there was a favorite side dish in the Bay Islands, it would be beans! When having a meal at an island home for breakfast, lunch, or dinner, chances are that you’ll find Honduran Red Beans on the table. The typical Honduran breakfast features refried red beans as a side, in place of hash brown potatoes or grits. They are the main attraction in the famous Honduran “Baleada” where they are refried and smeared on a fresh homemade flour tortilla! Served atop a bed of rice and in a thick red sauce is the way we like to eat them for lunch and dinner. And this is the recipe I’ve chosen for this blog post, which looks like this!
First Step in Making Honduran Red Beans
Begin by sorting one pound of fresh Honduran red beans. Selecting only the best beans and discarding any defective beans. (Skip this step if you buy pre-selected beans). You’ll be able to spot any bad beans if they are smaller than the rest of the beans or if they have a tiny hole in them. This would be an insect hole, which sounds gross but that’s the way our “organic beans” are brought to us in the stores and local markets. Fresh and free of pesticides. Next, wash the beans and discard any additional defective beans. You’ll know they aren’t any good if they float to the top as you are washing them.
Then, put them in a slow cooker with an equal amount of water. Add two cloves of minced garlic and cook for approximately three hours. The cooking time will depend on the quality of your beans. If the beans aren’t any good, you could cook them for hours upon hours and they will never get soft. Fresh young beans may even take less time than this!
Once the beans are soft, transfer to a pot large enough to hold the beans. Saute half an onion, half a green bell pepper, and mutton pepper in coconut oil. Once the onions are translucent, add to the pot along with the beans. This step adds the “island touch” to Honduran Red Beans. Our famous island trio — onion, sweet pepper, and mutton pepper!
Finally. Add salt, pepper, a little sugar and continue to boil a few minutes longer until all the flavors are fused into a delicious pot of Honduran Red Beans!
Once cooked, these beans can be placed in the refrigerator and reheated as needed for each meal. You could also skip adding the onions and peppers until later and put them in the freezer in zip-lock bags for several weeks.
Honduran Red Beans
- 1 Lb. Small Red Beans
- 2 Cloves Garlic - Minced
- 1/2 Onion
- 1/2 Green Bell Pepper
- 1 Mutton Pepper
- Coconut oil
- 2 Tbs. Sugar
- Salt and Pepper to taste
- Sort beans.
- Rinse and soak bean for 5 to 10 minutes.
- Add two cloves of minced garlic to beans.
- Cook in a slow cooker with sufficient water to cover the beans, for two to three hours until the beans are soft.
- Sautee onions, and peppers in coconut oil.
- Transfer beans from slow cooker to a large pot.
- Add sauteed onions and peppers to the beans.
- Continue to boil on the stove to incorporate the flavors of the peppers.
- Add sugar, salt, and pepper to taste.