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Cuban Black Beans and Rice recipe/ Moros y Cristianos

Cuban Black Beans and Rice recipe – Moros y Cristianos
Sofrito is the sauce used as a base for Moros y Cristianos, as well as many other Cuban meals. You have an hour to wait for your beans to soak, so take that time to chop your cherry tomatoes, bell peppers, onions, and garlic.

Cuban Black Beans and Rice recipe/ Moros y Cristianos


  • 4 Roma tomatoes, chopped
  • 2 bell peppers, chopped
  • 2 medium onions, peeled chopped
  • 8 to 10 garlic cloves, diced or minced
  • 2 teaspoons ground cumin
  • 2 teaspoons dried oregano leaves
  • 1 teaspoon paprika
  • 4 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 pound dried black beans
  • 1 pound smoked ham hocks
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 1 teaspoon salt


  1. Add the olive oil to a nonstick skillet over medium to medium-high heat. Add the chopped ingredients, then the spices. Sautee until the bell peppers and onions in particular are softened (about 10 minutes).
  2. Reduce heat to low, and allow the sofrito to simmer for a while, so the flavors can merge better (10-20 minutes, stirring occasionally). You should be left with about a quart of a thick, chunky sauce. Remove from heat and set aside.
  3. Place black beans in a pot w/ water at least an inch above the beans over high heat, then stir in the sofrito. Add the ham hocks, try to keep them as submerged under water as possible (although parts of the ham hocks will probably stick out of the water). Add the bay leaves. Allow the mixture to come to a boil for one minute, then reduce heat to low.
  4. Allow it to simmer covered for an hour and a half, just barely bubbling.
  5. Then remove the ham hocks from the pot and set aside. Remove the bay leaves. As the beans are still simmering, return the lid to the pot.
  6. Remove the meaty part of the ham from the bones and pork fat. If you like, you can shred the pork with two forks, then return it to the pot. Cook for another 30-60 minutes, until the beans are tender, and the beans are in a thick "gravy" (it shouldn't be watery). Remove pot from heat.
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Thanks to Taste of Cuba for this recipe!


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