Several years back, when I worked in downtown Dallas, we often ate a wonderful Red Beans & Rice dish from a cafetaria style restaurant. Recently I had the urge to eat this meal again. After some web surfing, some details of that experience came back to memory - the restaurant was situated inside the Plaza of the Americas and was called TreeBeards. At lunchtime, a long line would form at this place for their famous Red Beans & Rice. They had a veg. & a meat version of it. With all these memories flooding back, I could not wait to make this dish @ home. Though my dish may not be the restaurant version, it was very tasty and made for a very satisfying meal.
Here's how I made it:
2 cans Rajma/Red Kidney Beans - drained & rinsed
1 onion chopped
1 bell pepper chopped
2 cloves garlic - minced
2 bay leaves
1 tsp dried oregano
1 heaped tsp Lawry's Taco Seasoning mix
Salt to taste
2 tsp olive oil
Garnish (very imp., do not miss this) - chopped green onions & shredded cheddar cheese
Heat the oil & saute onions in it for 5 mins. Add the bell pepper and garlic. Saute 2-3 mins. Add the rajma and all the other spices & salt. Add about 2 cups water, cover and cook on medium for 10 mins. Take out about 1/2 cup of the rajma mix, cool slightly and grind to a paste. Add this back to the rest of the mix. This gives it the required consistently. Heat the mix again before serving. Check for taste at this stage.
To serve, spoon hot rajma mix over brown rice. Top generously with chopped green onions and shredded cheddar cheese.
These Red Beans & Rice go to the JFI - Rajma event at Divya's Dil Se.
This event was started by Indira of Mahanandi.
I served these with a side of taco salad, which I made as follows:
For the taco bowl - Spray 1 tortilla ( I used multi-grain) with cooking oil on both sides. Press gently into an oven safe bowl. Bake @ 400F for about 10 mins till edges turn brown.
For the salad - Chopped lettuce, colored peppers ( I used red, yellow & orange), sweet onions, shredded carrots, chopped tomatoes, Lawry's Taco Seasoning Mix.
Spoon the salad into the taco bowl. Break off pieces of the bowl and eat with the salad.