Has chili and soup fatigue set in on your efforts to incorporate more dried beans and lentils into your diet? Are you completely out of the seasonings needed to make those really wonderful east Asian dishes your local Indian restaurant serves?
If you are a fan of sausage, peppers and onions, this might be a vegetarian dish you can savor. It is quick and quite a change from many of the bean dishes you may have been trying lately. Economical too, especially when mushrooms are on special.
Onions, Mushrooms, and Peppers with Beans
1 c coarsely chopped onion
4 to 6 ounces mushrooms, sliced (white or baby Bella are both good--no need to go to the specialty aisle for this one)
1/2 c coarsely chopped sweet red pepper
4 cloves garlic, chopped
1 T olive oil
1 to 1 1/2 c cooked pinto beans, unseasoned (other beans may be substituted)
1 t dried basil
1 T balsamic vinegar
salt and pepper to taste
1. Saute the onion, mushrooms, and pepper in the oil over medium high heat, stirring occasionally, until the onions are translucent and just starting to turn golden.
2. Stir in the garlic and basil and cook for another 2 to 3 minutes.
3. Add the pinto beans with a small amount of the liquid from the beans. Stir and add the vinegar and salt and pepper. Cook for another 5 minutes, until the mixture is heated through and the flavors have blended a bit.
Top with grated cheese if desired. If you enjoy sausage and onions, peppers, and mushrooms on a hard roll, this would be a good substitute. If not in a sandwich, this is great paired with any artisan style bread.
Note the photos include a serving of oranges and strawberries on the side. Pinto and other beans are good vegetable sources of iron, but this nutrient is more accessible to our bodies if eaten with a good source of vitamin C. What better way to complement the bean dish than with a mix of seasonal fruits.