Last summer we spent a month in Costa Rica learning spanish, to surf, and becoming scuba certified. On our first night in Montezuma, we ate at a little restaurant and asked our server what he recommended. Gallo Pinto or rice cooked with beans. It is Costa Rica’s (and Nicaragua’s) national dish and traditionally eaten at breakfast; however, it can be eaten anytime.
Ours was served with fried plantains, side salad and chicken called a casado. We loved it! We were both very full and left the restaurant in a vacation love haze as we walked the dirt road back to our hotel.
Below is my take on gallo pinto. I added kidney beans, garlic, bell pepper and used brown rice. As I normally do not cook with salt, feel free to salt and pepper to taste, in moderation of course!
- 1 cup brown rice or 3.75 cooked
- 2 shallots, roasted and then chopped
- 2 green onions, chopped
- 2 baby bella mushrooms, diced
- 1 garlic head, roasted
- 1/2 red bell pepper, diced
- 1 15 oz can S&W Black Beans 50% less sodium
- 1 15 oz can S&W Kidney Beans 50% Less Sodium
- 1 tsp of Extra Virgin Olive Oil
Preheat oven to 500.
In a medium pot or rice cooker, cook rice according to instructions.
Meanwhile, on a baking sheet roast shallots and garlic head for 5 minutes in preheated oven.
Dice bell pepper, onion and mushrooms. Set aside.
Remove shallots and garlic. When cool to touch, carefully peel shallots and garlic, slice.
When rice is done:
In a large sauce pan, add 1 teaspoon of olive oil and saute roasted shallots, garlic, bell pepper, mushrooms and onions for 3 minutes over medium high heat. Add rice, kidney beans and black beans. Stir constantly until the majority of the juices evaporate and mixture thickens (about 7 minutes).
I enjoyed mine served up taco style in two corn tortillas with Marie Sharp’s Habanero Pepper Sauce!