Heat water to boiling in a large, heavy saucepan. Add beans to water gradually so boiling will not stop. Simmer 2 minutes and remove saucepan from heat. Set beans aside to soak 1 hour.
Add salt to saucepan. Cover pan tightly and bring mixture to boiling over high heat. Reduce heat and simmer 2 hours or until beans are tender, stirring occasionally.
Heat oil in a large, heavy skillet over low heat. Add onion and garlic. Cook over medium heat until onion is transparent, occasionally moving with a spoon. Add the cooked beans, the cooking liquid, chili powder and pepper.
Mash the bean mixture in the skillet. Continue cooking over medium heat, stirring occasionally, until mixture is thick.
posted by T5NF