I used to do this with lard. I know— but it’s the truth. Lard was one of the staples in my family kitchen as far back as I can remember. Most of the times it was the lard you buy in a bucket but sometimes it was lard harvested from a pig my dad would butcher. We used almost everything.
The golden liquid in the pan is olive oil. You can make refried beans without any oil. You just use the bean juice. They taste great and I’m sure much healthier. I heat up the olive oil and then throw in some onion and a few red dry chiles de arbol. Caution, the chiles de arbol are hot and if you choose to use them, the resulting vapor can sting. Interestingly, it doesn’t make the beans taste spicy hot. It’s weird. I like using onion and garlic. It makes it smell like I know what I’m doing. The truth is, I’m not a great cook. My go to meal was sliced hot dogs and scrambled eggs for a long time.
Before the oil gets too hot and burns the onion and chiles, start dropping in the super stars of the dish. Beans.
I love beans and to me they taste the best when they are served right after they are freshly cooked. Right out of the pot– almost like a soup. Beans are also very forgiving. They are like the equivalent of those jeans that make you look a couple sizes smaller without muffin top. If I forget about them while they are simmering, it takes a long time to get to the burning stage.
After they simmer and sizzle for a little bit, start squishing. I eat them rolled up inside a tortilla– a taco. Some people call these burritos, burros, taquitos and I’m sure there are many more names I’ve never heard of.
I like my tortillas with lots of toasty circles. Again, I burn alot of food so I figured I might as well get used to it. Now I’m like, “I meant to make it that way.”