the appetizer:

Carol Gelles chooses the 100 Best Vegetarian Recipes from her classic, award-winning cookbook (1000 Best Vegetarian Recipes), including Baba Ghanoush; Frijoles; and Szechuan Shredded Vegetables with Pressed Tofu.






Makes 2 1/2 cups
Serves 3 to 4


The Mexican method is to cook dried beans without presoaking them. These beans are unbelievably delicious. Use them on tostadas, in burritos, or alongside other Mexican entrees.

  • 3 cups water
  • 1 cup dry pinto, black, or kidney beans
  • 1/2 cup chopped onion
  • 1 tablespoon minced, seeded jalapeno, or to taste
  • 3 cloves garlic, minced, divided
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt, or to taste
  • 1 tablespoon vegetable oil
  • 1/2 cup peeled, seeded, and chopped tomatoes
  • Chopped cilantro, garnish

1 In a 2-quart saucepan, combine the water, beans, onion, jalapeno, 1 teaspoon of the garlic, and the bay leaf. Bring to a boil over medium heat. Reduce heat and simmer, covered, until beans are tender, about 1-1/2 hours. Stir in the salt and discard the bay leaf; simmer 30 minutes longer.

2 In a small skillet. heat the oil over medium-high heat.

Add the tomatoes and remaining garlic. Cook, stirring, until tomatoes soften, about 3 minutes.

3 Place the tomatoes and 1/4 cup of the beans in a food processor fitted with a metal blade. Cover and blend until smooth. Return mixture to the bean pot and cook, uncovered, 10 minutes longer.


Add the tomatoes to the pot without pureeing them.

  • from:
    100 Best Vegetarian Recipes
  • by Carol Gelles
  • Wiley 2008
  • $16.95; Cloth
  • ISBN-10: 0470185503
  • ISBN-13: 9780470185506
  • Recipe reprinted by permission.

Buy 100 Best Vegetarian Recipes


100 Best Vegetarian Recipes


This page created June 2008

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