The star ingredient in these black bean recipes is important to all kinds of people. For the health-conscious, black beans are a great source of fiber, protein, and folate (which is the naturally-occurring form of vitamin B9, an essential nutrient crucial for proper brain function, cell growth, and mental and emotional health). For the food historians and anthropologists: Black beans have long been a staple in Central and South America, as they’re native to those regions, and today, you’ll also find they’re popular in Louisiana Cajun and Creole cuisine, in the Southwestern U.S. and the Caribbean, and, frankly, everywhere. For all of us: Black beans are versatile, accessible, and delightful. They can be purchased dried or canned, they can be enjoyed hot or cold, they’re creamy inside but hold their shape well through all kinds of cooking methods, and they take on the flavor of whatever seasoning you give them. TL:DR: We recommend always having some black beans on hand. But how to cook black beans? Allow us…