I know, I know spring is here and stew is probably the last dish you want to see right now, but as I mentioned before, in Colombia we eat soups and stews all year round. Even on the coast of the country, where it is always very hot, 80-90+ degrees, people eat delicious and hot fish sancocho.
There are those simple dishes that I want to make because I need comfort food, and because they remind me of my grandmother and what she used to make when I was a child. A bean soup with meatballs is that kind of dish for me. When I make it, I remember every detail of those family meals with all my cousins and siblings running around Mamita’s house.
I made these beans for lunch and they were fantastic. I used canary beans instead of pinto beans, which it what Mamita always used. That was the only change I made from Mamita’s dish, so feel free to substitute your favorite beans for the canary beans.
1 pound dried canary beans
2 large carrots, peeled and sliced
1 teaspoon ground cumin
1/2 teaspoon color, achiote or sazon Goya with azafran
1 tomato chopped
1 garlic chopped
1/2 cup chopped onion
1 scallion, chopped
12 cups water
1large potato, peeled and diced
Salt and pepper
1/3 cup fresh cilantro
1/2 pound ground pork
1/2 pound ground beef
1/3 cup masarepa
1/4 cup water
salt and pepper
1/4 teaspoon ground cumin
In a large pot, heat the oil over medium heat. Then add the onions and cook for 3 to 4 minutes or until the onions are translucent. Add the tomatoes, garlic, scallions and cook for another 3 minutes.
To make the meatballs: In a medium bowl, combine all the meatball ingredients and using your hands, mix well until combined. Divide meat mixture equally into equal portions and roll into balls with your hands. Place in a plate and set aside.
Add the beans, carrots, cumin, color and water to the pot. Bring to a boil. Then cover the pot and reduce the heat to medium- low and cook for about 1 hour.
Add the meatballs and potatoes and cook for 45 minutes to 1 hour or until the beans are cooked. (Add additional water, as necessary.) Add salt and pepper, stir and sprinkle fresh cilantro and serve.