The two things I’ve been most dreading this semester are at my door, and I still don’t want to believe it. One of them shouldn’t present any issue- I have to write a three page book report, but my instructor wants it to be written in a very specific and awful way (“The purpose of this paper is…”), and I really need to do well, and those things add up to anxiety and dragging of feet. The other thing is my med math test, which I’ve been worrying about since I received my admission letter. I am not a math person. I’m actually the anti-math person, and I need to get a 90 or better in order to pass. It doesn’t go into my class grade, and there are opportunities to retake it if I do fail, but I don’t want to fail. I want to take it once and get it over with, but it freaks me out, and I hate it.
I finally finished my red beans and rice last night, but by the end I was so sick of them I could barely stand it. In an attempt to avoid that kind of food exhaustion in the future I tried to think of something I could realistically eat every day, and I came up with burritos. Burritos are quick, and easy, and they can be healthy, and so this week’s protein was refried beans.
I suspect refried beans are one of those things that would be cheaper to buy than make, but buying a can of beans only takes a couple of seconds (not counting the time spent walking to the store), and I had a paper to put off writing, and dosage calculations to avoid studying, so that wouldn’t have worked. Besides, making my own refried beans was easy and delicious! I put a cup of dried beans and half a pot of water on to boil, and once it boiled I brought it down to a simmer, and then went upstairs to do homework for the next two hours (because while I am a procrastinator I’m not crazy, and I’ve been working hard on my dreaded projects all weekend). This next part of the recipe is optional, but I forgot about the beans until I smelled them burning, at which point I ran downstairs and dumped them into a colander to see if they were salvageable. I rinsed them off, and because they didn’t look too bad I decided that they were good to go, and put them in more water and left them to cook for another 45 minutes, and went back to my books. When they were just about done I chopped up two onions and sauteed them in olive oil until they were clear and smelled heavenly. I drained the beans, and tossed them in with the onions, and because I don’t have a potato masher I smooshed them with the back of a spoon as best as I could. I added a half cup of water, and some shredded cheddar cheese, and took them off heat. They looked pretty good at that point, so I put them into a tupperware, but I wondered if I could make them creamier, so I pulled out my roommate’s magic bullet and ladled an experimental scoop of beans in, just to see if it would work. I was worried they might liquify too much and turn into refried bean soup, but blending made them even more delicious, so I did the whole batch, and came out with better-than-canned beans! As I’m typing this I’m wondering whether they might be improved with a dash of Tabasco, but they’re darn tasty as they are now. Will I always make my own refried beans? I don’t know. It’s pretty easy and rewarding, but so is opening a can of premade beans. I would recommend that people at least try making their own, just so they have a point of comparison, because they’re very nice. I know life can get crazy though, and I actually bought a bread product for the first time since I’ve lived in Baltimore (I’m pretty sure) this week because sometimes you just don’t feel like standing in front of a skillet for an hour making your own tortillas.
I’m not going to lie and tell you I wouldn’t have enjoyed this more if I had made the tortilla myself, but it was still delicious (whole wheat tortilla with homemade refried beans, brown rice, kale, cheddar cheese, and yogurt).