Makes 6 servings
1/2 lb dried black beans, picked over and rinsed
3 1/2 cups water
1 bay leaf
1 smoked ham hock, rinsed
1 tsp oregano
1 tsp cumin
1 tsp garlic powder
1 tsp lime juice
1-2 tsp salt (to taste)
1 (8 oz) can tomato sauce
Optional toppings: cilantro, sour cream, cheese, diced tomatoes, avocado slices, green onions etc.
1. Place water, black beans, bay leaf and ham hock in slow cooker. Cover and cook until beans are tender, about 8 hours on LOW or 5 hours on HIGH.
2. Discard bay leaf. Transfer ham hock to cutting board , shred into bite size pieces and add back into slow cooker (discard the fat, bone and skin).
3. Add the oregano, cumin, garlic powder, lime juice, salt and tomato sauce to the slow cooker. Taste test and adjust seasonings accordingly.
4. Ladle into bowls and garnish with desired toppings.