Let Cuban Black Beans Rest Overnight For A Melding Of Flavors

Black beans are a staple of Cuban cuisine. You would be hard-pressed to sit down at a Cuban dinner table and not find a bowl of them, whether they are accompanying a plate of mojo-roasted chicken or a heaping helping of juicy, braised ropa vieja. Making a great plate of Cuban black beans is not as easy as opening a can and applying heat, though. For truly delectable beans, we recommend letting them sit overnight to properly absorb every flavor.

Much like the phenomenon many experience when making soup, beans are often better the next day. This effect can happen for a variety of reasons, but most consistently it occurs simply because of time. When given enough time, the compounds from the various herbs, seasonings and aromatics will be able to spread more evenly throughout the brothy liquid of the beans. Since beans are super starchy and absorbent, they will also have a chance to soak up extra flavor in their interiors, making each bite even more flavorful.

How to store beans while they marinate

Cooked beans should be stored in an airtight container in the fridge when left overnight so that they can improve their flavor while also preventing the growth of bacteria or other harmful pathogens. You can use all of them the following day, or if you prefer you can use them little by little. The properly stored beans will last up to four days before they begin to decline in quality.

When you are ready to serve the beans, gently reheat them by adding them to a pot on the stove and bringing them to a simmer. If they seem a bit dry, you can remedy this by adding a little water or broth as they warm up. You can then use them in more complex dishes, toss them with fresh rice, or let them shine on their own as the perfect side dish.