Black Bean Soup

Happy Black Bean Friday, folks!

Ok ok… I know what you are going to say.  “Soup?  It’s hot as hey-yell all over the U.S., and you want me to make soup??”

Well!  Not only is this soup 100% freezable (if you do that kind of thing–and not that I’m suggesting a black bean soup-icle, but if you find it too much, you can certainly store it for cooler days), but you can also lighten it up with fresh garnish.  Much like one might dress up her black beans and eat them with tortilla chips, one might also add fresh and chopped spring onions, jalapeños, tomatoes, avocado (!), cilantro, vegan cheese and/or cashew cream.  The more fresh veggies you add as garnish, the lighter your soup.

Also, this is a great gf dish for a gathering (you can even make it the day before, and it will just develop overnight).

Image courtesy of thanunkorn / FreeDigitalPhotos.net

Image courtesy of thanunkorn / FreeDigitalPhotos.net 

Black Bean Soup

Prep time: 15 minutes.  Cook time: 4 hours.  Serves 8 or more.

Soup:

  • 2 c dry black beans, picked over and washed
  • 3 c water
  • 3 c vegetable broth (low to no sodium, if you can)
  • 3 T chili powder (or more, depending on your taste)
  • 2 t ground cumin
  • 1 T ground black pepper
  • 2 t ground cayenne
  • 1 large yellow onion, diced
  • 1 large bell pepper, diced (or and for a warmer alternative: 2 poblanos)
  • 1 jalapeño, tiny cuts
  • 4 cloves garlic, crushed or chopped
  • 2 T fresh chopped or 3 T dry oregano
  • 2 T fresh cilantro stems, finely diced (save leaves for garnish)
  • handfull of flat leaf parsley, including stems, finely diced
  • 1 1/2 c fresh or frozen corn
  • juice from one lime
  • 2 T olive or grapeseed oil
  • salt to taste (add only at the end)

Garnish (any of the following prepared in small cuts):

  • spring onions
  • tomato
  • avocado
  • jalapeño
  • fresh cilantro leaves
  • cashew cream
  • lime wedges

Directions:

  1. Heat the oil on medium in your favorite large soup pot. Add the chili powder, cayenne, cumin, and black pepper in the oil and cook the spices until fragrant.
  2. Add water, stock, and beans and bring to a boil.
  3. Cook the beans for 2 hours on low and covered.
  4. Add onions, green peppers, jalapeño, garlic, oregano, and cilantro stems and cook the beans completely, adding any more water, if necessary. (After about 30 minutes of cooking, taste and adjust seasonings to taste–try to hold off on adding salt until the end.)
  5. Add the corn and cook for a final 5 minutes (until corn is heated through). Add salt to taste.
  6. Ladle into bowls, garnish, and CHEW!
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