Jerk Inspired Black Beans and Rice

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Lots of titles ran through my mind for this post; Not a Jerk, Maybe a Jerk, or my husband’s contribution — Don’t Be a Jerk Black Beans and Rice. Despite the humor, this turned out to be a lovely weeknight surprise as I raided my pantry and the produce drawer for something that took us away to tropical paradise.

Earlier in the week we grilled some fresh pineapple to go with our chicken. If you haven’t given this a try, oh please you must soon. The carmelization of the sweet sugars, the hint of smoky goodness adds so much flavor, and it freezes really well. Having that and a fresh, ripe Honey Mango sent me to the islands when my darling dear asked, “what’s for dinner honey?”  Usually, this combo turns into a fragrant fresh salsa or cooked chutney for fish, chicken or pork. Yet tonight with some black beans, a little leftover rice, and a handful of spices, dinner rang of Reggae and Jamaican tang. Can you hear the steel drums in the background yet? Oh Mon! Check out the recipe to find the super special secret ingredient! This dish can be a zingy side or a vegetarian main course.

not-a-jerk-salad
Grilled pineapple and honey mango inspired this “Jerk” recipe

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Not a Jerk, Maybe a Jerk, or Be a Jerk — Black Beans and Rice
Serves 4 
Cook and prep time: about 40 minutes


Ingredients
1 tablespoon olive oil
¼ cup diced red onion
½ cup diced red or yellow bell pepper
1 cup diced honey mango
½ cup grilled pineapple
¼ cup chopped dried plantains (Trader Joe’s)
1 15 oz can no salt diced tomatoes
¼ teaspoon ground allspice
¼ teaspoon ground cinnamon
1 teaspoon ground cumin
1 teaspoon El Guapo Chili California Molido (ground chili pepper)
1 pinch ground cloves
1 pinch red pepper flakes (to taste)
¼ teaspoon ground black pepper
1 15 oz can low salt black beans
2 cups cooked long grain rice


Prep
Drain and rinse canned beans; set aside. Wash and chop bell pepper, onion and mango.
Rough chop dried plantains and grilled pineapple.
Combine spices in small bowl, mix thoroughly.


Directions
Saute onion and bell peppers in olive oil over medium heat until translucent, about 3-5 minutes. Add canned tomatoes and juices, bring mixture to a boil. Add spice mixture, mango, pineapple, and plantains and beans. Reduce to a simmer and cook for about 20 minutes. Add  pre-cooked rice and cook for another 15 minutes stirring occasionally.  Keep an eye on liquids and don’t let the pot temperature increase, don’t want to burn the beans or rice mixture.


Cook’s Tips
The grilled pineapple brings a wonderful smokiness to this side dish. You could substitute canned or fresh pineapple if necessary. I grill a whole pineapple very once in a while and freeze part of it for dishes like this that just need a bit. Go totally vegetarian with this, or add some protein. This makes a nice side for your grilled meat  or you could just throw add some smoked pork chop or sausage meat to make this a one-pot meal.

  • El Guapo Chili California Molido (ground chili pepper) available at Raley’s Markets in the Mexican Food Section
  • Super secret ingredient: Trader Joe’s Honey Plantain Strips.

Check it out with a poached egg!

 Jerk Inspired Black Beans and Rice
A little poached egg adds the protein for a quick meal!
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4 Responses to Jerk Inspired Black Beans and Rice

  1. Suzie Ridler says:

    Hey Mon! I want to me some jerk now! That looks so good Robin!

    I am so grateful for your comment and support. You remind me why I love blogging and sharing my foodie stories.

    Thank you for commenting not just for the support but because now I can come visit your entertaining foodie blog. I am your latest follower!

  2. Robin says:

    Hi Suzie,
    I am so tickled you dropped by and decided to stay as a follower! I really enjoy your foodie adventures, photos and stories. I get inspired often. Making new friends this way is just so cool.

    All the best!

  3. Kestrel says:

    I love the colors on this! Where do you get the honey mango??

  4. Robin says:

    Hi Kestrel,
    Nice to hear from you! You can usually find honey mangos at Mexican produce markets. Sometimes I get lucky and Raley’s will bring them in a several times a year. They have a wonderful mild, sweet flavor and not quite a much “tang” as regular mangos.

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