Anasazi Cave Beans with Poblanos and Okra Rice

Today is clean out the freezer day! Going into April, I want to use up all the odds and ends of last year’s harvest before this year’s veggies start coming in, as well as making sure that nothing from the back of the freezer languishes forgotten.

Lo and Behold, what do I find in the frozen depths but a couple of bratwurst sausage patties, a few bags of poblanos, a bag of okra, and a rotisserie chicken carcass. Time to match that up with some beans, also from last year’s harvest.

I used 1500 Year Old Cave Beans (aka Anasazi Beans), but this is also delicious with red beans, for a variation on Red Beans and Rice.

I started by putting the chicken carcass in a stockpot full of water and let it simmer for a few hours to make the chicken broth while the beans soaked. This will also be used for making jambalaya, so plenty of broth is good.

Ingredients

For the beans:

  • 2 cups dry beans
  • water to cover beans
  • 8 oz sausage of choice (andoulle, bratwurst, or smoked sausage all work great).
  • large onion, chopped
  • 5 or 6 cloves garlic, chopped
  • 4 or 5 poblano peppers, seeds removed, chopped
  • 1 stalk celery, finely chopped
  • Optional: 1 or 2 tbsp olive oil

Seasonings

  • 2 or 3 sage leaves, crumbled
  • 2 or 3 bay leaves
  • 1/8 cup worcestershire sauce
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1 red cayenne pepper
  • a palmful of dried parsley
  • 1/4 tsp black pepper
  • Hot pepper sauce, for serving

For the Rice:

  • 2 cups rice
  • 2 cups chicken broth
  • 1/2 tsp salt

  • 1 1/2 cups okra, sliced thin
  • 1 or 2 cloves garlic, minced

Instructions

Put the dry beans in a large bowl and add enough water to cover the beans by about an inch. Let the beans soak for about 4 hours.
Add the rice, chicken broth, and okra to the instant pot, set to multigrain or brown rice, and let the instant pot do it’s thing. If you don’t have an instant pot, then put rice ingredients in a pot on the stove, bring to boil, reduce to simmer, cover, and cook for about 55 minutes, stirring occasionally.

If using a fattier sausage, put sausage in a dutch oven on the stovetop and cook until browned. If the sausage is more lean, you may need to add a little olive oil first.

Once the sausage is done, remove it from the pot and set it aside to chop, slice, or crumble (depending on what sausage you used. Leave the drippings in the pot and stir in the onion, garlic, poblanos, and celery. Cook these until the onion is translucent, about four minutes.Stir the sausage back in.

Drain the soaked beans, reserving the liquid. Stir the beans into the pot. Add enough of the reserved soak water to cover the beans by about half an inch. If there is not enough, add more water or chicken broth. Next, stir in the seasonings, except for the hot sauce.

Bring to boil, then reduce to a simmer. Cook for two or three hours, stirring frequently, or until beans are soft.

Serve beans over rice. Add hot sauce to taste.

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