I like soups, and I need more in my repertoire. This one proudly made the cut. It is surprisingly good, though I confess its best quality might be that it is a worthy vehicle for piles of salsa, avocados and a dollop of cream.
I could serve this with grilled, marinated steak or pork, or maybe just some quesadillas and a salad. Bring out the Mexican beer and margaritas! Chips, salsa, cornbread… I have been intending to make this soup for a week, but never seemed to start early enough in the day. I shouldn’t complain: with this recipe I don’t need to remember to soak the beans the night before! It isn’t terribly difficult to make, you just need a timer and an early start around midday. (You need about a 3-4 hour jump start, since the beans need lots of soaking and simmering).
A few things: you can control how pureed or chunky you like this soup. In the least, pull out 2 cups of the beans and puree, add back to soup and leave the rest chunky. At the most: puree it all.
Black Bean Soup
2 cups dried black beans, washed
2 quarts chicken or vegetable stock
2 cups chopped yellow onion
4-5 cloves minced garlic
1 T fresh oregano or 2 tsp dried herbs
½ bunch cilantro, washed and cut into chiffonade
1 large anaheim pepper, finely chopped with seeds (or 2 jalapenos)
1 16 oz can roasted or chopped tomatoes with juice
3 T dark rum
1 tsp brown sugar
2 T lime juice
Kosher Salt to taste
Place beans in saucepan, cover with warm water by 3 inches, cover with lid. Bring to boil over low heat. While beans are waiting to boil: take out 3 small bowls. In the first put chopped onion, minced garlic and oregano. In the second place cilantro and pepper, in the third fill with rum, sugar, tomatoes and lime juice.
Back to the beans: let it boil hard for one minute, then simmer another 20 minutes. Drain beans of water, and add stock. Bring back to simmer; if stock drops below bean level, add more stock. Cook 20 minutes then add onion, garlic and oregano; cook another hour until beans fall apart, stir occasionally so beans don’t stick to pan. At the end of 2 hours, roughly chop/lightly puree soup. Place back in saucepan and add tomatoes, pepper, cilantro, rum and lime juice. Bring to simmer, puree about half of soup and add salt to taste.