Rutabaga rice and beans.
I could also call it onion, garlic, rutabaga, tomato, salt, chili powder, cumin, and hot pepper flakes rice and beans, but that doesn’t have quite the same alliterative and exotic ring to it.
TFD dot com tells me exotic (adj.) means:
- From another part of the world; foreign
- Intriguingly unusual or different; excitingly strange
- Of or involving striptease
Sounds like a good a good fit!
Rutabaga is believed to have originally come from lands afar (Scandinavia and Russia), the idea of adding it to rice and beans is novel (intriguing! and excitingly strange!), and unless you like your rice and beans extra crunchy, you’ll need to strip the rutabaga first along the way (that is, you’ll need to peel off its outer skin; if the Swedish turnip’s feeling bashful, feel free to give it a gentle tease).
There are a lot of ways to make rice and beans. This is one. With the tomato and spices, it has somewhat of a Spanish Rice feel to it. The hot pepper flakes then add a touch of temperature, and the rutabaga and rest combine to give it a satisfying heartiness. This recipe also helps answer the question, “What should I do with all the rutabaga left over from Thanksgiving?” ‘Helps’ is the right word because, well, in my case I still have some left from the original big one.
Rutabaga Rice and Beans
- 1 cup dried black beans (about 2 1/2 cups cooked)
- 1 cup brown rice (about 2 1/2 cups cooked)
- 4 Tbsp olive oil
- 2 onions, diced
- 5 garlic coves, diced
- 2 cups diced rutabaga
- 3 plum tomatoes, diced
- 1/4 cup canned crushed tomatoes
- 1 1/4 tsp salt
- 1/2 tsp cumin
- 1/2 tsp chili powder
- 1/4 tsp hot red pepper flakes
(Pre-step: Soak the dried beans overnight in a pot of water. Then, right before cooking them, drain the soaking water, rinse the beans, and refill the pot with fresh water.)
- Cook the beans until they’re generally soft (about an hour in simmering or lightly-boiling water, covered)
- Meanwhile, sauté the the onions, garlic, and rutabaga in olive oil until soft (medium heat)
- At the same time, also cook the rice (20-30 minutes using a rice cooker)
- Once the beans are done, drain the water
- Then add the beans and rest of the ingredients to the sauteed onion/garlic/rutabaga mixture. Altogether, add: the tomatoes and crushed tomatoes, the cooked rice and the drained cooked beans, and the spices and hot pepper flakes.
- Cook over medium heat, stirring, until it starts to stick to the bottom (10-15 minutes). Scrape up and mix back in the parts that stick.
With this dish, I like the slight crunch that comes from dried beans that have been cooked. If you want, you could also use canned beans as another option.
Since the beans were cooking for an hour, I let the onions, garlic, and rutabaga sauté for the same amount of time. You could let these go for more or less time, but here’s how I did it this time.
- I sauteed the onions and garlic for 20 minutes
- Then I added the rutabaga and covered the pan for another 20 minutes
- And then I did 20 minutes more uncovered
Then I put the tomatos, rice, and beans in.
And then I added the spices and mixed everything together and was done!
I told some friends at the potluck I made this for that it had rutabaga in it. For everyone else, surprise!
I also made lentil soup with butternut squash for the potluck (when it’s at your place, it’s good to have a big pot of something; and, progress on the pumpkin front!)
But rutabaga rice and beans. What more can I say but, from another world, different, and good hot or cold. I just finished the leftovers and want some more.