This one is a staple from Texas that can be juked up with other stuff or not depending on what you are using them for. Most traditionally refried beans are made from plain cooked pinto beans with very little flavor other than salt and pepper. I like making them from Boracho beans which have the aromatics and bacon and then are generally fried in lard and mashed up during this frying process. Here is my version:
2 lbs of dried pinto beans
1 large onion
1 rib celery
5 cloves garlic
1 large jalapeno or 2 serrano peppers
4 tbs chopped cilantro
4 tbs ground cumin
2 bay leaves
4 strips of bacon or 4 oz salt pork
olive oil or lard for the re-frying
salt and pepper to taste (this recipe requires advanced salting technique)
Begin by soaking the beans overnight or, if you are lazy like me, put them in a pot with water to cover a few inches over the beans. Bring them to a boil, then turn off the stove and let stand covered for 1 hour. Drain the H2O from either method, rinse the beans and set aside.
Chop your onions, celery, garlic and jalapeno and saute for a few minutes in olive oil with the cumin, then add beans and cover with H2O by about 2 or 3 inches in a heavy bottomed pot. Bring to a boil, turn the water down, add chopped bacon or salt pork. Don’t add salt at this point but add a good amount of ground pepper. After the beans cook for about an hour add 1 tbs of salt or to taste. Cook until tender. This is a basic pot of boracho beans.
To make refried beans drain and reserve the liquid and mash with a potato masher or for a smoother batch use a stick blender or food processor, adding cooking liquid until they reach the right consistency. Before serving heat a heavy skillet to high and add some lard or oil if you are wimpy and fry up the beans until they are thick.
Refried Beans are Killer Delicious.