We like this zesty, south-of-the-border side dish for picnics and outdoor get-togethers. Top with queso fresco and fresh cilantro for something truly special.
3 cups dried pinto beans, soaked 8 hr. or overnight in cold water
1 medium onion, quartered
5 cloves garlic (3 crushed, 2 minced)
3 tablespoons vegetable oil
1 medium jalapeño, stemmed, seeded and minced
3 tablespoons fresh lime juice
3 teaspoons grated lime zest
Salt and pepper
Queso fresco and chopped cilantro, for serving, optional
How to Make It
Drain beans; place in slow cooker. Add onion and crushed garlic. Pour in enough water to cover. Cook, covered, until beans are tender, about 4 hours on high or 6 on low.
Drain beans, reserving liquid. Use a potato masher, pastry blender or fork to work bean mixture into a thick, pulpy mass.
Warm oil in a large pot over medium-high heat. Add minced garlic and jalapeño. Cook, stirring often, until softened, 3 to 5 minutes. Stir in mashed bean mixture and cook until warmed through, about 5 minutes. Add small amounts of reserved cooking liquid to thin as desired. Mixture should have the consistency of thick mashed potatoes.
Remove from heat and stir in lime juice and zest. Season generously with salt and pepper. Top with queso fresco and chopped cilantro, if desired.