Frijoles a la Charra

This recipe is as close as I can get to what I remember from living in San Antonio. This very traditional dish is served everywhere there. I start the pot in the morning, then let them simmer all day so the beans get nice and soft and my house smells amazing!

Frijoles a la Charra

1 lb dried pinto beans, picked over and rinsed
1/2 lb bacon, chopped
½ c chopped garlic
½ c cilantro, divided
1 c white onion, chopped
1 T chili powder
1 T cumin
1 T kosher salt
¼ t fresh cracked pepper
½ gallon cold water
2 c tomatoes, chopped
3 jalapenos, finely chopped

In a large bowl or pot, soak the beans in half a gallon of water overnight. The next day, drain and rinse the beans.

In a large heavy pot, cook the bacon until done but not crisp. Add the onion, garlic, and jalapeno to the hot bacon. Cook, stirring regularly, until onions are transparent. Add the beans, cumin, chili powder, salt, and ¼ cup cilantro. Add ½ gallon cold water and stir with a wooden spoon to scrape the browned bits off the bottom of the pan. Turn heat to low. Cook beans at a very slight simmer until fork tender – I let them cook all day (~6-8 hrs) so the beans get very soft. Stir regularly to avoid burning the bottom and add more water as necessary (you will have to add another pint or two). When ready to serve, remove from the heat, and add the tomatoes and remaining cilantro. Taste for seasoning and serve!


One thought on “Frijoles a la Charra

  1. Pingback: Carnitas! | Erica's Recipes

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