Black Bean Sauce

If you like mole but hate the time-consuming process, you will LOVE this sauce. It combines black beans with many of the ingredients in traditional moles. The result is a rich sauce you can use with tamales, chicken and even over scrambled eggs for breakfast. I’ve also used this sauce, thinned out with broth, as an enchilada sauce. I’m still finding (looking for?) new ways to use this delicious sauce!

Black Bean Sauce as a Base Sauce

Salsa Cocida de Frijoles Negros (Black Bean Sauce)

2 ancho chiles, stems, seeds and veins removed

1 ½ teaspoons dried Mexican oregano, crumbled

1 teaspoon cumin seeds

1 tablespoon sesame seeds

¼ teaspoon ground cinnamon (Mexican canela, if you have it)

¼ teaspoon ground allspice

1 medium plum (Roma) tomato, chopped

1 cup cooked black beans, drained and rinsed

1 cup vegetable broth (traditionally uses chicken broth)

1 teaspoon brown sugar

1 teaspoon cider vinegar

Salt to taste

1 tablespoon olive oil or vegetable oil

In a small skillet, toast the ancho chiles over medium heat until they soften (about 15 seconds). Put the chiles in a small bowl and cover with hot water. Soak for 20 minutes or until softened. (See BASICS: Dried Chiles for more information).

Spices to Toast

In the same skillet, toast the oregano, cumin seeds, and sesame seeds for 30 seconds. Add to a spice grinder and grind until the mixture becomes a powder. Add to a blender.

Drain the chiles and place them in the blender along with the rest of the spices, tomato, beans, broth, sugar, vinegar and salt.

In a medium saucepan, heat the oil over medium heat. Add the black bean sauce and cook, stirring frequently, until it thickens (about 5 minutes). If it is too thick, add a little more broth.

Black Bean Sauce

Cover, bring to a simmer and cook for another 5 minutes. Add salt to taste, if needed. And it is ready for use or you can store it in the refrigerator for a few days.

NOTE:  I did not have homemade black beans when I made this recipe, so I used a 15-ounce can of black beans (drained and rinsed), and it turned out great!

Black Beans

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