*  Exported from  MasterCook  *
                         BLACK BEAN CHILI (PRODIGY)
 Recipe By     : 
 Serving Size  : 8    Preparation Time :0:00
 Categories    : Vegetarian                       Main Dish
   Amount  Measure       Ingredient -- Preparation Method
 --------  ------------  --------------------------------
    2       c            Black turtle beans
    1                    Bay leaf
    4       ts           Cumin seeds
    4       ts           Dried oregano leaves
    4       ts           Paprika
      1/2   ts           Cayenne pepper
    1                    Chile negro or ancho chile,
                         -(for chili powder), -ÿÿ
    2       tb           -Chili powder, or more
    3       tb           Corn or peanut oil
    3       md           Yellow onions
                         - diced into 1/4-in squares
    4                    Garlic cloves
                         - coarsely chopped
      1/2   ts           Salt
    1 1/2   lb           Ripe or canned tomatoes
                         -peeled, seeded and chopped
                         - juice reserved
    1       tb           Rice wine vinegar (or more)
    4       tb           Cilantro, chopped
                         Green chiles:
    2                    Poblano or Anaheim,
                         - roasted, peeled & diced
    2       oz           -Canned green chiles,
                         - rinsed well and diced
      1/2   c            Grated Muenster cheese
                         - (or more)
      1/2   c            Creme fraiche or sour cream
    5                    Cilantro sprigs
   SORT THROUGH THE BEANS and remove any small stones.
   Rinse them well, cover them generously with water, and
   let them soak overnight. Next day, drain the beans,
   cover them with fresh water by a couple of inches and
   bring them to a boil with the bay leaf. Lower the heat
   and let the beans simmer while you prepare the rest of
   the ingredients. Heat a small heavy skillet over
   medium heat. Add the cumin seeds, and when they begin
   to color, add the oregano leaves, shaking the pan
   frequently so the herbs don't scorch. As soon as the
   fragrance is strong and robust, remove the pan from
   the heat and add the paprika and the cayenne. Give
   everything a quick stir; then remove from the pan--the
   paprika and the cayenne only need a few seconds to
   toast. Grind in a mortar or a spice mill to make a
   coarse powder. Preheat the oven to 375F. To make the
   chili powder, put the dried chile in the oven for
   3-to-5 minutes to dry it out. Cool it briefly; then
   remove the stem, seeds and veins. Tear the pod into
   small pieces and grind it into a powder in a blender
   or a spice mill. Heat the oil in a large skillet and
   saute the onions over medium heat until they soften.
   Add the garlic, salt and the ground herbs and chili
   powder and cook another 5 minutes. Add the tomatoes
   and their juice. Simmer everything together for 15
   minutes then add this mixture to the beans, and, if
   necessary, enough water so the beans are covered by at
   least 1-inch. Continue cooking the beans slowly until
   they are soft, an hour or longer, or pressure cook
   them for 30 minutes at 15 pounds pressure. Keep an eye
   on the water level and add more, if needed, to keep
   the beans amply covered. When the beans are cooked,
   taste them and season to taste with the vinegar,
   additional salt if needed, and the chopped cilantro.
   Prepare the garnishes. If you are using fresh green
   chiles, roast them over a flame until they are evenly
   charred. Let them steam 10 minutes in a bowl covered
   with a dish; then scrape off the skins, discard the
   seeds, and dice. Serve the chili ladled over a large
   spoonful of grated cheese and garnish it with the
   creme fraiche or sour cream, the green chilies and a
   sprig of fresh cilantro. Though served in a bowl and
   eaten with a spoon, this chili is a great deal thicker
   than most soups--thick enough in fact to be served on
   a plate right alongside fritters or cornbread. It
   also, however, can be thinned considerably with stock,
   water or tomato juice to make a thinner but still very
   flavorful black bean soup. When thinned to make a
   soup, it can be served as part of a meal rather than a
   meal in itself.
   This is one of the best-known recipes from the San
   Francisco restaurant Greens.
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