Thursday, December 10, 2009

011.Verde Valle Frijo Mayocoba Peruano

Claim: “Mexico’s #1 Brand of Beans”

Ingredients: mayocoba beans

99 cents for 1 pound

I stopped by Las Americas last Friday after work to pick up some carnitas to go. The thick chunks of pork shoulder, poached gently in a vat of their own fat, remind me of the duck confit of southwest France. It is a flavor I crave, often with a vengeance.

While there, I did a little shopping. (Las Americas is also a grocer.) It's enormous fun for me, strolling the aisles in search of nothing, led by a curiosity and a vague sense of recognition. I bought some McCormick strawberry ("Fresa") jam, some Guerrero tostadas - fried, whole tortillas, stacked in cellophane - a jug of Jumex mango nectar for the lads and a one-pound bag of green beans.

Not those green beans - whole, dried shell beans, similar in shape to pintos but clearly green-yellow in color, even through the murky package under dim light. This is the kind of stuff that drives the Aisles Project. What could these oddly-colored beans be? Aren't beans reddish brown, black or white?

I took them home and got them soaking, then went online and found a story that told not only of the bean's South American ancestry, but also of a tidy little turf war being waged in the name of the mayocoba. Here 'tis.

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