Here are two really easy and insanely flavorful side dishes that went along with the vaca frita with a twist that I will be posting at a later time. These are also really quick and great to have on hand for any time. I imagine they would go great with some grilled chicken or fish for a fast meal.
(Adapted from Closet Cooking)
Makes 8+ servings
2 tablespoons canola oil
1 onion, chopped
2 cloves garlic, minced
2 cups long grained rice
4 cups water
2 handfuls cilantro, chopped
2 limes zested and juiced
Heat the oil in a saucepan over medium heat. Add the onion and saute until tender, about 5-7 minutes until the onions have softened. Add the garlic and saute until fragrant, about a minute. Add the rice and toast in the oil for a few 2-3 minutes.
Add the water, bring to a boil, reduce the heat and simmer, covered until tender, about 20 minutes for white rice or 40-50 minutes for brown. Remove from the heat and mix in the cilantro, lime juice and zest.
Cuban-Style Black Beans
(Adapted from Bon Appetit, September 1997)
Makes 6-8 servings
1/4 cup olive oil
1 large onion, chopped
6 large garlic cloves, chopped
1 tablespoon dried oregano
3 15- to 16-ounce cans black beans, rinsed, drained
3/4 cup canned vegetable broth or water
1 1/2 tablespoons cider vinegar
Heat oil in heavy large saucepan over medium heat. Add onion, bell pepper, garlic and oregano and sauté until vegetables begin to soften, about 5 minutes. Add 1 cup of beans to pan. Using back of fork, mash beans coarsely. Add remaining beans, broth and vinegar and simmer until mixture thickens and flavors blend, stirring occasionally, about 15 minutes. Mix in sugar, if desired. Season beans to taste with salt and pepper and serve.