Simple but flavorful rice is definitely a Tampa staple, and of course pairs perfectly with Cuban black beans.
Swap option: You may substitute olive oil for equal amounts of butter or an oil of choice.
For the Cuban-Style Black Beans:1.
In a blender, add 2 tablespoons of the olive oil, onion, garlic and bell pepper, and blend until finely chopped. Set aside.2.
Put the black beans and bay leaves in a large saucepan and add 8 quarts of water. Bring to a boil over medium-high heat. Reduce the heat to medium-low heat, partially cover the lid and let simmer for 2½ hours or until beans are tender.3.
In a separate skillet on medium-high heat, add the remaining olive oil. Add the blended onion and pepper mixture and sauté until lightly toasted, 4-5 minutes. Stir in the cumin and oregano until fragrant and the spices are slightly toasted.4.
Add the cooked onion and pepper mixture into your pot of beans along with the vinegar and sugar, continue to simmer gently for another hour or so until the beans are tender and the flavors are blended well. Season with salt. Serve hot or let it cool and refrigerate overnight for up to three days.
For the Yellow Rice:1.
In a medium pot with a tight-fitting lid, heat oil over medium heat.2.
Sauté your onions and garlic until translucent, about 3-4 minutes.3.
Add rice, stir to coat evenly and sauté for 2 minutes. Add salt, Bijol and water, and stir.4.
Lower temperature to medium-low heat and cover and cook for 20 minutes.5.
Lift the lid and fluff the rice with a fork, and serve with black beans.