Black Beans and Rice

1 tablespoon canola oil or extra virgin olive oil
1/2 medium onion, thinly sliced across the grain
2 garlic cloves, minced
2 cups cooked medium- or long-grain white rice, or brown basmati rice
1 1/2 cups cooked black beans with about 1/2 cup of their cooking liquid
Salt to taste

Heat the oil in a large, heavy saucepan or skillet over medium heat, and add the onion. Cook, stirring, until the onion is tender, about five minutes. Stir in the garlic. Cook, stirring, until fragrant, 30 seconds to a minute. Add the rice, beans and about 1/2 cup broth from the beans. Stir gently for about five minutes until the mixture is heated through, and serve. The mixture should be moist. Add more broth if necessary.

Variation: For Veracruz-style black beans and rice, add one to three minced serrano or jalape?o chiles. Cook along with the onion before adding the garlic, rice and beans. In Veracruz, this dish would be served with fried plantains.

Advance preparation: You can make this several hours ahead so long as you have more broth to add when you heat it up; otherwise, the rice will be dry.