Sunday, April 22, 2007

Cuban Black Bean Patties with Pineapple Rice

Tonight's dinner was one that, from the first bite, we immediately decided was a make-again. It was very, very yummy. It is also very quick to put together. It was delicious with a bottle of sugarcane-sweetened imported soda. Yum yum.

My two criticisms are:
1)As with most Cooking Light recipes, the patties didn't seem to want to stay together. They were very mushy, and "dredging" them in cornmeal basically meant putting the patty in the pan and then sprinkling some cornmeal on top of it. This worked well though. But don't expect a solid patty.
2)Also typical of CL recipes, the serving size was ridiculously small. This recipe supposedly yields 4 servings (a little bit of rice and one patty), but it worked much better serving 2. There's no way you could eat just one patty and feel comfortably full. Two was much more sufficient.

We will definitely eat this again during the summer, as it is a very summery-tasting dish.

Cuban Black Bean Patties with Pineapple Rice
From CL, March 2007

You can prepare the patties in advance up to the point of dredging them in cornmeal; cover and refrigerate. Purchase precut, fresh pineapple in the produce section to save time.

1 (3 1/2-ounce) bag boil-in-bag long-grain rice
2 teaspoons butter
1 cup diced fresh pineapple
2 tablespoons chopped fresh cilantro
1/4 teaspoon salt

2 cups rinsed, drained canned black beans (1 [15-ounce] can), divided
1/2 teaspoon bottled minced garlic
1/4 teaspoon ground cumin
1/8 teaspoon salt
1 large egg white
1/2 cup (2 ounces) shredded Monterey Jack cheese with jalapeño peppers
1/4 cup chopped red onion
1/4 cup cornmeal
Cooking spray
1/4 cup reduced-fat sour cream

To prepare rice, cook rice according to package directions, omitting salt and fat. Drain; place rice in a large bowl. Melt butter in a nonstick skillet over medium-high heat. Add pineapple; sauté 4 minutes or just until pineapple begins to brown. Add pineapple mixture, cilantro, and 1/4 teaspoon salt to rice in bowl; cover and keep warm. Wipe pan clean with paper towels.

To prepare patties, place 1 1/2 cups beans, garlic, cumin, and 1/8 teaspoon salt in a bowl; partially mash with a fork. Place 1/2 cup remaining beans and egg white in a food processor; process 30 seconds or until well combined. Add bean puree to mashed beans in bowl, and stir until combined. Add cheese and onion to bean mixture; stir until combined. Divide bean mixture into 4 equal portions, shaping each into a 1/2-inch-thick patty. Place cornmeal in a shallow dish. Dredge both sides of each patty in cornmeal.

Heat pan over medium-high heat. Coat pan with cooking spray. Add patties; cook 3 minutes on each side or until browned. Spoon about 1/2 cup rice onto each of 4 plates; top each serving with 1 patty and 1 tablespoon sour cream.

Yield: 4 (OR TWO!) servings

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