This may very well be my original bulk cooking meal. My mom made it very often while we were growing up, though hers was chronically underseasoned (sorry, but not sorry). I made various versions during my time at college because it was so cheap, so filling, and yielded so much frickin’ food with a decent amount of protein. I could just freeze it up and not have to fuss with preparing food again for much of the week again. Time was a primary objective at school. It has evolved into this current iteration.
Fun fact, one of the reasons this appealed to me so much in college was because it’s vegetarian. Meat was prohibitively expensive on my student budget and the thought of keeping raw meat in my cramped student fridge was a nauseating prospect. Oh! Another fun fact! I have: perhaps, an irrational fear of contracting foodborne pathogens Anyway–
2-1 lb bags of dried black beans (soaked and cooked to package instruction)
2-3 TBSP of a mildly flavored cooking oil
1 large yellow onion, diced
3 cloves of garlic, minced
2-3 carrots, diced
1 red bell pepper, diced
1 green bell pepper, diced
2 jalapenos, diced and deseeded
2 TBSP ground cumin
1 tsp Mexican oregano
salt, to taste
black pepper, to taste
2 TBSP sherry wine
2 TBSP apple cider vinegar (or any other transparent cooking vinegar)
1 quart of vegetable or chicken stock (one step vegan conversion when using vegetable)
15 oz can of diced tomatoes
Directions: Soak and cook your black beans in advance. While you could use cans that would be a whooooole lot of cans. It’s much cheaper and efficient to use dry beans here. Prepare your vegetables. In, once again, the biggest pot you have, heat up the oil over a medium-high heat. Saute the onions and garlic until soft and fragrant, then add the carrots and bell pepper to do the same. Next, add in the jalapenos, a pinch of salt, and stir. Add the cumin and oregano, allow it to heat up and become fragrant, then hit it with the wine and vinegar. Bring the heat down to a medium-low and let it sizzle then simmer for a few minutes.
Add in the cooked black beans and the majority of the salt you planned to use (beans are greedy). Finish with black pepper, then stir the contents until combined. Add in the stock, stir. Bring the heat up to high and let it come to a boil before covering with a lid and bringing it down to low heat. Simmer for 15 minutes. Take an immersion blender and give about a dozen jolts with it. We do not want to blend the mixture completely smooth, just break up some of it. If you do not have an immersion blender to do this, just transfer 3-6 cups of the soup into a traditional blender or food processor, blend smooth, and add it back to the pot. I’m tellin’ you, though, that the $40 on an immersion blender is beyond worth not dealing with that mess. Anyway–that was a tangent. Let the soup continue to simmer. Add in the drained diced tomatoes and any desired seasoning adjustments. Let it simmer again for about another 15 minutes. Good serving items with this include lemon wedges and cilantro.
What I ate today: grilled salmon, canned black beans (seasoned with garlic powder, oregano, red wine vinegar, salt and black pepper), beetroots and mashed potatoes. I don’t know why people complain that eating healthy is boring… I actually quite enjoy simple healthy meals like these! :)
TwitchyWitchyOne’s Aggressive Home Protection Spell Bottle
I used every item I had on hand for this spell bottle, because we’re going through a mildly nasty separation from our roommate. I went for equal parts aesthetic and function (because I want it to be on display in my living room), so I’m going to include the order in which I added ingredients, but it’s not really necessary. Feel free to use as is, modify for what you have on hand, or for your personal preferences.
A bottle/jar/container with a cork/lid.
A brown candle.
Ingredients (remember you can use whatever you have or prefer instead):
Black Beans (dry): protection, defense, strength.
Red Beans (dry): health, energy, compassion.
Chilli Powder: repelling negative energy.
Cinnamon (ground and stick): protection, strength, prosperity.
Cloves: banishing, protection.
Garlic (ground and whole): protection, guard against negative energy.
Nutmeg: protection, prosperity.
Rosemary (ground and whole): good health.
Black Pepper: protection against evil.
Ginger (ground and whole): strengthens the other ingredients.
Charged/Infused Water (feel free to charge however you want or infuse with any herbs or crystals you feel would be helpful. I spit into the water for a mild taglock and spoke to it about what it’s purpose was.)
While adding each ingredient, focus on the property you need from it. Say “I/We are ___” inserting the property you are focused on. When something had a property other than protection, I used it. Protection is the point of the bottle as a whole, so you don’t need to say it with every protection herb you add. You know?
The order in which I added ingredients:
1. Black Beans (“We are strong.”)
2. Salt (“We are safe.”)
3. Cloves (“We banish negative energy.”)
4. Cumin (“We are safe.”)
5. Chilli Powder (“We repel negative energy.”)
6. Nutmeg (“We are prosperous.”)
7. Ground Garlic (“We guard against negative energy.”)
8. Ground Cinnamon (“We are prosperous.”)
9. Black Pepper (“We protect against evil.”)
10. Ground Rosemary (“We are healthy.”)
11. Ground Ginger (“We strengthen.”)
12. Red Beans (“We are compassionate.”)
13. Whole Garlic (“We guard against negative energy.”)
14. Whole Ginger (“We strengthen.”)
15. Whole Cinnamon (“We are prosperous.”)
16. Whole Rosemary (“We are healthy.”)
17. Charged/Infused Water (whatever you charged or infused it with.)
Close the bottle/jar. Heat the bottom of a candle to make it stick to the cork/lid of your bottle/jar. Light the candle. Think (or say) “Our home is safe. Our home is whole. Our home is blessed.” Let the candle burn out to seal the bottle/jar.
If you want to, at this point you can add any sigils, symbols, ribbons, anything else that will have meaning and also be nice to look at.
EDIT: 1. Please don’t leave a burning candle unattended, and be extra careful if it’s burning on a cork! Make sure to put it out before it can catch on fire!
2. I didn’t think about it when I made it, but happened to put exactly the right amount of water in. If you’re using dry beans, they will expand in the water! Make sure there is plenty of room for them to expand so it doesn’t overflow!