Homemade Pinto Beans
1 cup dry pinto beans, rinsed
3-4 cups water
1/2 onion, cut in half
2 cloves garlic, cut in half
1 jalepeno pepper (cut stem end off, but otherwise leave whole)
2 serrano pepper (cut stem ends off, but otherwise leave whole)
Optional: bacon or ham hock for flavor
Place beans in a saucepot and cover with water (you can soak beans several hours or overnight if desired).
Add rest of items.
Cover, and simmer 3-4 hours for tenderness.
Make sure you add water as needed, and stir the pot occassionally. You do NOT want the beans to stick to the bottom.
If any of the beans burn, the whole batch will taste burned.
After cooking, remove the flavoring additions and throw away. I leave the garlic and onion, because I like the additional texture, but throw out the peppers and pork (if using. I never add that).
I also like my beans soupy (frijoles de la olla), but use a slotted spoon to drain off excess liquid when you go to use the beans, if you like yours a bit drier. I would refrigerate it in the water, however, or it may become too dry. For the very last step, salt to taste, but go lightly as it can easily become too salty. Good in refrig for three days, or freeze for later use.
If you want to refry your beans, in a frying pan place oil (or bacon drippings, or shortening) and your cooked beans (it's the fat that adds the flavor, sad but true, so add a lot!).
As the beans heat up, mash with a potato masher continually until you get desired consistency, and beans are warmed through. If desired, add sour cream and cheese.