Spicy Black Bean and Sausage Stew

Black bean and smoked sausage stew…

This is one of my father’s favorite things to eat.  Odd, huh?  He feels, very deeply so I might add, that this is one of the most delicious and impressive foods anyone could ever make. Ever.

Even stranger; I happen to agree.

This is a riff on the Brazilian classic Sunday food, feijoada.  Feijoada is Brazil’s version of Italian Sunday Gravy (http://chefnotebook.blogspot.com/2012/08/sunday-gravy.html).  It takes hours to make, is passed down from generation, and each town, village, and family makes it a little differently.  They cook all different pieces of pork in black beans for hours, lovingly tasting, adding a dash of this, a pinch of that, until it’s perfect.  They will use bacon, ribs, trotters, pork shoulder, sausage, shanks, and so on.  Waste not, want not.

Of course, my version is only a riff, not the real McCoy.  I love to give it a slight Mexican kick.  For the pork element, I use very good quality smoked Polish kielbasa, and then add lots of spices, onions, heat and of course tender and delicious black beans.  It’s divine.

Spicy Black Bean and Sausage Stew

Prep time:  5 minutes
Cooking time: 1 hr
Yield: 4 portions


2 cans black beans, drained and rinsed
1/2 bunch cilantro, rough chopped
1 small yellow onion, med dice
5 cloves garlic, minced
1 medium sized smoked Polish kielbasa, excellent quality
1/8 cup tapatio hot sauce
1 tbsp chili powder
1 tsp ground cumin
1 tsp paprika
vegetable oil
4 organic eggs


Grill the kielbasa until slightly charred and skin is beginning to split.  Let cool completely and slice into small pieces.  In a medium sized sauce pot, begin sweating the onion and garlic in vegetable oil.  Add the sliced kielbasa and continue to cook until highly fragrant.  Add the beans and 1/2 cup water.  Add half the cilantro, add the herbs and spices and hot sauce.  Bring to a simmer, turn heat to low, and cook, low and slow, for about 45 minutes.  It should be thick.  Check seasoning.  When done, stir in remainder of cilantro.

In a non-stick pan, gently cook the eggs sunny side up.

Spoon the stew into 4 warm bowls.  Place 1 egg on top of each and serve right away.

I love to serve this with steamed Jasmine rice, avocado, a little cheese and more hot sauce (of course).  The egg can be omitted, but I love the depth of flavor it adds as a finishing touch, especially when the yolk breaks and works into the spicy black beans, balancing the spice perfectly.  


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