Pasta with Black Bean Sauce: Meatless Monday

    I love making a dish where the flavors are a surprise.  When I’m eating pasta I expect that the red sauce will be a tomato based marinara sauce.  This sauce is a red sauce with tomatoes in it, but it has black beans and red pepper in it as well.  It’s a surprise taking the first bite to have a Mexican sauce on an Italian dish but the surprise was a pleasant one.
     This black bean sauce is thick and slightly spicy.  It has a delicious flavor and a smooth texture from the black beans but it is still mixed with traditional tomatoes.  Frank and I both enjoyed this twist on an Italian favorite.

Pasta with Black Bean Sauce (adapted from Branny Boils Over)
1 medium onion, chopped
3 garlic cloves, minced
1 can (14.5 oz) stewed tomatoes
2 T. chopped jalapenos
1 T. chopped cilantro
1 t. red pepper
1 t. salt

1 t. pepper

1/2 t. oregano
2 c. canned black beans, rinsed and drained

16 oz. spaghetti

1.  Spray a large skillet with cooking spray.  Add the onion and garlic and cook over medium heat for 5 minutes or until tender. 

2.  Add in the tomatoes, jalapenos, red pepper, oregano, salt, pepper, oregano, and black beans.   Bring to a boil and reduce the heat.  Simmer for 20 minutes.

3.  Spoon the hot mixture into a food processor and blend until mostly smooth.  You can also do this using an immersion blender (which I do not have). 

4.  Serve over hot cooked pasta and garnish with cilantro.

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