In a feature story published over the weekend, The Wall Street Journal advises you to “provision your July 4th barbecue with first-class versions of our most democratic homegrown specialties…”
And one of the featured homegrown specialties is the pinquito bean, the Santa Maria Valley’s famously native bean that is considered an essential component of the classic Santa Maria Style Barbecue menu.
In the story, author Colman Andrews writes, “Called out below are a few items that you might find at any July Fourth barbecue and that are exceptional nevertheless, thanks to the care with which they are made and the culinary heritage they embody—as deliciously as any foods I know.”
He continues, “Pinquitos are small pink beans with a tender skin but a rich, slightly firm texture even when completely cooked; they have a faintly herbaceous flavor with an earthy overlay, like a more refined version of pinto beans. They don’t seem to grow anywhere other than around the Santa Maria Valley on California’s Central Coast. Pinquitos are delicious and unusual beans, and make a good side dish even if you’re not grilling. They’re available by mail from several sources, but the one with the best pedigree is Susie Q’s Brand, based, of course, in Santa Maria.”
Bravo to the Wall Street Journal and Colman Andrews for recognizing pinquito beans as a classic regional American food!
P.S. Click here for our earlier post about the origins of Santa Maria pinquito beans.