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I made this night before last. I had never used soaked over night beans. I am lazy and last minute and had always resorted to canned. But this time I planned ahead. While the flavors were wonderful the beans were a little tough. However, upon eating the leftovers the next day for lunch I found that this dish was even better. I heated a bowl for lunch and ended up eating spoonfuls cold out of the plastic container with much enjoyment. I must admit that after tasting the finished product I added a bit chicken boullion powder (two teaspoons) The finished product resulted in an enjoyable meal. However, I must warn that the chicken bacame a disturbing grey color. But it you close your eyes it is worth it.
I made this dish for the family and we loved it. It was a great cool weather dish!
We really enjoyed this dish. I did cheat and use canned black beans. I used 2 cans. I wasn't sure if the chicken should be cooked beforehand, and I really prefer shredded chicken to chunks so I roasted a chicken and added the shredded chicken to the recipe at the appropriate time. We also did not have fresh basil so that was eliminated. My husband and I both loved it. We served it with rice. Next day, hubby reheated it and made a wrap out of it with a tortilla. I think the chicken could easily be elimated to make it vegetarian. Rich, hearty comfort food.
I added some sliced serrano peppers for a bit of heat, and the beans were good. Sorry, but the okra and chicken didn't work for me, though. The slices of gray chicken weren't appetizing in appearance, and required using a knife (the rest of the dish didn't), and the texture of the chicken (very firm compared to the other soft ingredients) and okra (mushy/slimy) didn't compliment the rest of the dish. It is a South Beach friendly recipe, and next time I'll leave out the okra and cook the chicken on the side.