Soco Beans

The final installment of the perpetual campers series from my memoir, Humble Pie

This was the foundation of our diet when we were without electricity. It is Felipe’s favored bean recipe, the way his Mama makes them. They are so vsvevg!

Soco Beans

1 cup of beans
Aprox 1/4 cup oil
1 chopped onion

Boil the beans until almost cooked and add salt. Continue to cook until Continue reading

How to eat a Chili

Third in a series from my work in progress

The realizations and irritations of electricity free living continued to reveal themselves, enlightening and annoying in turn. Some days it was the music I missed the most, others I was amazed that for thousands of year’s people read only by candlelight at night. It is not romantic. It is inconvenient at best; enduring the eye strain as the candle flickers, the bugs flying into your face, your book and your flame. My books are full of squished bug spots. It took a while to remember all the ways I use electricity. When getting ready go out in public, I would think, Oh, I’ll just iron that blouse, oops, guess I’ll wear a T-shirt. It is definitely a day for the fan! Guess not. But we can do anything for four months I reminded myself.

December rolled around and harvest came to a slow, disappointing end financially. Continue reading

Bean Manifesto

I think of talent as a gift you possess you have not worked for; like being able to talk backward, or having uncommonly good balance. I only have one. I love all foods. Everything. All fruits, vegetables, meats and grains and pretty much every preparation, though I certainly have preferences. I will eat anything that is actually food including live bugs and warm iguana blood. I have always been this way. My mother never had to threaten or cajole me to eat, she was forever chasing me away from raw hamburger, basically trying to stop me from eating things. I did have an aversion to cream of mushroom soup for a while because we were so poor everything we ate was en casserole. Now I think it tastes like childhood.

I was a waiter for many years and as most waiters are, I was obsessed with food and restaurant culture. I dined in some of the finest dinning rooms in the country, eating everything from foie gras foam to lavender infused lychee fruit. After all those extravagant meals I can say with assurance that my favorite food is beans. Of course I love every kind of bean and the thing that amazes me the most about them, other that their obvious health and fiscal benefits, is that every time I eat them I think, man these are so good! I also say this, and considering how often we eat them, it’s a testament to Felipe’s patience that he smiles and nods his head, rather that screaming,” I KNOW YOU LOVE BEANS ABBY! ”

What I have noticed during my trips to the US is that people eat beans only occasionally and mostly from cans. I have more than once visited a pantry and found the same bag of beans in it that I encountered six months prior. You know the one, mixed bean soup with the carcinogenic liquid smoke flavor packet.
So this is my Bean Manifesto, I hope to inspire anyone who reads it to eat beans at least three times a week. To buy said beans in bulk and to prepare them yourselves.

Continue reading