Slow-Cooker Brazilian Black Bean and Pork Stew
Creating this soul-warming stew used to be a time-consuming labor of love. We decided to nix the labor and keep the love.
Why This Recipe Works
We wanted an ultrasatisfying stew of creamy black beans in a full-bodied, smoke-and-pork-infused broth all piled high with chorizo and tender, juicy ribs. So we cut out many of the traditional time- and labor-intensive steps and reached for the slow cooker. We skipped soaking the beans, instead adding a pinch of baking soda for even cooking. Additionally, we discovered that browning the different cuts of meat on the stovetop wasn't necessary to achieve full, complex flavor. Adding a ham hock provided body and smokiness that more than made up for anything lost by not browning the meat. And finally, we found that raising the ribs out of the cooking liquid by stacking them on top of the other ingredients kept them from overcooking and becoming mushy, ensuring a perfect result every time.