If you took dark red kidney beans and rolled each one into the shape of a ball, you’d have an idea of what Bola Roja beans look like. Even though this recipe appears on every bag of Goya Bola Roja beans, I put it on one of my cards to remind me to make it. It is my only recipe that has plantain in it, but that’s not why I like to make it. It’s because the beans are literally, “bolas rojas” – that is, red balls. They are not kidney-shaped at all. A very lively bean when sorting through them, because they will roll farther than any other bean you’ve ever seen!
1 pound Bola Roja beans
1 green plantain
1 can tomato sauce (8 oz.)
2 medium onions, chopped
2 cloves garlic, crushed
½ teaspoon oregano
¼ teaspoon black pepper
2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
salt or Goya adobo seasoning to taste
Soak sorted beans overnight; rinse, then place in large saucepan. Peel plantain, cut it in half and add to the beans. Cover beans and plantain with water and cook for one hour. Remove plantain to the blender, adding 1 cup of cooking liquid and 1 cup water. Liquefy plantain; stir blended mixture back into beans and add salt or adobo. Cook for 20 min. on low heat. In a separate pan sauté onions and garlic in oil; add tomato sauce, oregano, and black pepper. Simmer while beans finish cooking. Mix sauce into the beans and serve over rice.