Our local library sells issues of old magazines for 25 cents each. I rarely buy them since I have free subscriptions to several magazines and am usually behind on reading them! However, if I spot any Reiman publications, I will purchase those and peruse the recipes, looking for a new one to try.
Just recently I found a recipe for Cheesy Beans and Rice in the February/March 2002 issue of Light & Tasty. I made some changes to the original recipe, adding sausage and using homemade kidney beans I had in the freezer. The first version was a bit too spicy, even for me – and I usually like spicier foods. From now on, I will use mild Ro-tel; however, if you want the heat, you can use the original Ro-tel.
Cheesy Beans and Rice
1 cup uncooked brown rice
2 cups kidney beans (or one 16-ounce can, rinsed and drained)
1 medium onion, chopped
1 tablespoon olive oil
1/2 tablespoon butter
8 ounces smoked beef sausage, cut into bite-size pieces
1 can (14 1/2 ounces) diced tomatoes and green chilies, undrained
1 teaspoon chili powder
1 1/2 cups shredded cheddar cheese, divided
Cook rice according to package directions. Transfer to a bowl; add the beans.
In a nonstick skillet, heat olive oil and butter. Add onion and saute for 2 minutes; add sausage and saute another 2-3 minutes. Stir in the tomatoes and chili powder. Bring to a boil; remove from the heat.
In a greased 2-quart baking dish, layer half of the rice mixture, one half cup of cheese and half of the tomato mixture. Repeat layers.
Cover and bake at 350 degrees for 25-30 minutes or until heated through. Uncover; sprinkle with remaining cheese. Bake 5 minutes longer or until cheese is melted.
photo courtesy morgue file