Gallo Pinto (Costa Rican Rice and Beans)

IMG_3625We just got back from a vacation in Costa Rica (Playa Flamingo to be exact, go book your trip now!)  where we spent a week in the ocean, hanging at a resort pool (complete with a swim up bar), having beach bonfires, doing yoga with an ocean view and having all sorts of adventures with a bunch of our pals. The reason for the trip was that our friends Nate + Sarah decided to get hitched in the paradise you see in the picture above. Geniuses.

It was great and so was the food. We ate rice and beans as a part of almost every meal for a seven days and when we got home the first thing Brent wanted to do was recreate the recipe, so we did.

photo (6)
Gallo Pinto
adapted from Vegetarian Times

Ingredients:

  • 1 tablespoon olive or canola oil
  • 1 medium-sized onion, peeled and finely chopped
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 2 cups cooked brown or rice
  • 2 cups cooked or canned black beans, drained, rinsed and liquid reserved
  • 1 tsp. ground cumin
  • 1 tsp. ground coriander
  • 1/4 tsp. ground ginger
  • 1-2 tablespoons Vegetarian Worcestershire sauce (or Salsa Lizano if you are lucky enough to have it or want to buy it on Amazon.com)
  • Juice of 1/2 a lime (or more, to taste)
  • Salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste

Directions:

  1. Heat oil in large skillet over medium heat, and add onion. When onion starts to turn a little translucent, add garlic, and sauté for about 3 minutes, or until onion is golden brown.
  2. Stir in 1 tablespoon of Worcestershire sauce to the onions and garlic.
  3. Add in the cumin, coriander, ginger with to the onions and garlic, mix until incorporated.
  4. Stir in rice, beans and seasonings, combining well. Add 1/4 to 1/2 cup liquid from canned beans, if desired, to make the rice a little more moist, or as the recipe says “dirty.” I did this and it did bump up the flavor a bit.
  5. Cook until heated through, and add lime juice, salt and pepper to taste.
  6. Add another tablespoon of Worcestershire sauce or Salsa Lizano to the mix if you feel like your beans are missing a little seasoning. I only used 1.25 tablespoons and I thought it tasted great.

The original recipe called for an additional cup of rice, but I wanted a more even bean to rice ration. If you want to add that additional cup, just add an extra tablespoon of worcestershire or Salsa Lizano. I also used brown rice and it tastes great (and is better for you) I also really like squeezing a bit of lime over the beans after I re-heat them. Feel free to top with cilantro or green onion too.

My view today is of clouds and city, not of beaches and palm trees,  but at least I can eat this at work and pretend I’m back in Costa Rica… right?

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One response to “Gallo Pinto (Costa Rican Rice and Beans)

  1. I want to try that Salsa Lizano!

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