Arroz y Frijoles Negros del Tomás

This recipe is far from unique, but nails many of the basics in the Mexican pallet that I know of. Cumin, onions, garlic, tomato, even a carrot for fun. I try to use most common ingredients that I have on hand so as to not make the process too complicated. Here, I prepare the Rice and Beans with a separate, simple Salsa. This way you can add as much fireworks to your beans as you like.




  • 2 cups dried Black Beans (makes 6 cups cooked)
  • 1 Gal. water, or as needed
  • 1 cup Beef (or Vegetable for Vegetarians) Broth
  • 2 cups dry White Rice (makes 6 cups cooked) (Substitute Rice Noodles, if desired)
  • 7 sliced Garlic Cloves (4 cloves for the Black Beans, the other 3 for the Salsa)
  • 3 Roma Tomatoes, sliced thin (for Salsa)
  • 2 Yellow Onions, diced (one each for beans & rice, and one for salsa)
  • 6 Serrano Chili Peppers, stems removed, sliced (for Salsa)
  • 1 Carrot, peeled and sliced thin (for Salsa)
    • 1/2 TSP Chili Powder (for Salsa)
    • 1/2 TSP Coriander (for Salsa)
    • 1 TSP dried Oregano (for Salsa)
    • 2 TSP Cumin (Cumino – 1 TSP for Beans, the other for the Salsa)
    • Salt to taste (I used about 1 TSP for Beans and another for the Salsa, 2 total)
  • 1 bunch Cilantro, rinsed and de-stemmed (for garnish)
  • Chopped Lettuce or fresh Spinach for serving bed in bowl

RICE and BEANS Directions for preparation

  • Take large pot, add water until just over 1/2 full, and bring to mild boil
  • Rinse dried Black Beans thoroughly in colander, and put them in boiling water with 1 TBSP Olive Oil
  • Once the pot is boiling again, reduce heat on burner suitable to keep it at a simmer or low boil, adding 2 cups of Rice, or equivalent Rice Noodles
  • Add one of the diced Onions, and 4 of the sliced Garlics to pot
  • Check pot once in a while to monitor the water level and give it a stir so that none sticks to the bottom of your pan
  • Once your liquid achieves a certain brothiness, take a sample of a few Black Beans to see if they are cooked yet (the Beans will take longer to cook than the Rice or Rice Noodles)
  • Keep simmering until the liquid level gets down to the point you have to add more liquid, and add 1 TSP Cumin, Salt to Taste (I used 1 TSP for Beans)
  • Take your cup of Beef (or Vegetable) Broth, and pour that into the pot, stirring as you do
  • Simmer an additional 20 minutes and set aside

SALSA Directions for preparation (Can be made concurrently with Rice & Beans)

  • Take Sautee pan and coat with 2 TBSP Olive Oil
  • Heat on burner until you can feel the heat on your hand near the skillet
  • Add 1 diced Onion, 3 sliced Garlics, stirring quickly so they do not burn
  • Cook until soft, then add
    • 3 Roma Tomatoes, sliced thin
    • 6 Serrano Chili Peppers, stems removed, sliced
    • 1 Carrot, peeled and sliced thin
      • 1/2 TSP Chili Powder
      • 1/2 TSP Coriander
      • 1 TSP dried Oregano
      • 1 TSP Cumin (Cumino)
      • Salt to taste (I used about 1 TSP for Beans and
        another for the Salsa topping, 2 total)
  • Monitor progress on pan and stir contents frequently to minimize burning, adding more Olive Oil only as needed
  • Once all contents properly melded and cooked, set aside after sprinkling with a handful of Cilantro and cover

COMBINING  Directions

  • Line individual serving bowls with Lettuce or Fresh Spinach
  • Take Rice and Beans pot and fill each serving bowl half to two-thirds way
  • Take Saute pan Salsa and add on top to each serving as much as you dare to

Be sure to try the Salsa before laying it on so you know how hot it is!

GARNISHING To add on top

  • Cilantro
  • Crumbled or shredded Farmer Cheese (Con Queso, optional)
  • Sliced Avocado (optional)
  • Dollop of fresh Sour Cream or Plain Yogurt (optional)
  • Handful of crushed Corn Chips (optional)
  • Squirt of fresh Lime (optional)

Thomas Gorman Aug. 4, 2017
Photo credit: Thomas Gorman


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