I've been making a lot of food from scratch lately- chocolate chip bran muffins, all types of bread, hamburger and hot dog buns, refried beans, dried and frozen strawberries.
I love the creamy refried beans I get with my Mexican dinners in the restaurants, so I finally looked up a recipe and learned how to make them.
Soak your beans for a few hours in cold water (I left them soaking for 10 hours while I was at work yesterday).
Alternately, you can boil water and cover the beans with that and let them soak for an hour.
Change water and simmer beans for an hour and a half or two hours, or until you can smash a bean on the side of the pan with your wooden spoon. Add some salt and simmer a bit longer. For added depth, boil beans with a ham hock or a few pieces of raw bacon.
When your beans are almost done, saute up half an onion and a few cloves of garlic in oil. When they are soft, add the beans and mash them all together, saving the warm beanwater (I use a potato masher).
When the beans are all mashed, add your warm beanwater (doesn't that sound appetizing? You can drink the leftover beanwater if you want) and stir. Make your beans a little runnier than you would like because they harden up when they cool.
Voila! Delicious refried beans. Enjoy in burritos or my favorite, with Doritos.