black beans

this is an incredible dish that is a favorite of my family's. we love pairing it with rice or bread, but we love even more enjoying it the next day, after the flavor has developed, over stone-ground grits. it really couldn't be any easier to prepare, which is kind of embarrassing to reveal when you get asked breathlessly for the recipe. the longer you can let it simmer, all the better to allow the water to turn slowly into black, meaty liquid gold.

16 oz dried black beans
16 oz polish sausage
8 oz bacon
1 green bell pepper, chopped
1 onion, finely chopped
1 bay leaf
1 tsp dried oregano

Rinse black beans in large sauce pan. Drain. Add water to two inches above, and bring to a boil. Reduce heat and simmer one hour.
Slice sausage, and add to beans. Simmer another hour, adding water if necessary. You can also keep the top on to retain water.
Dice bacon and saute in skillet. Cook over med heat. When bacon begins to brown, add onion, pepper, bay leaf, oregano, pepper and salt. Saute until veggies are tender and translucent.
Add veggies and bacon to beans and simmer at least another 45 minutes. Season to taste