Last night, I almost forgot. At the last minute, I managed to scrape up some soup from the bottom of the pot, throw some cilantro on top, and capture at least a vague resemblance of this oh-so-amazing soup. It’s not a beautiful photo- we had already decimated the avocado and other toppings, but it will work, because I just can’t keep this soup recipe from you any longer.
Black Bean Soup
This soup most closely resembles a Cuban-style black bean soup. It’s heavy on the acid, with lots of lemon juice and vinegar, and a strong kick of cumin and chili. The salt, spice, and acid is all added in at the end, so it’s a bit of an exercise in a-little-more-of-this and a-little-more-of-that with lots of tasting in between, until you hit that sweet spot balancing all the seasonings. The most important thing is that you really need to taste the vinegar and get that chili zing. The recipe I give below is pretty accurate for seasoning, having made this soup countless times, but small things like the amount of sodium in your broth can affect the final outcome. So trust your gut and do a little tasting, adding more or less salt or spice, until you get it just how you prefer.
Also, you can totally make this soup in the crockpot. I usually do. Instead of simmering it on the stove, after sautéing the onions and peppers I just chuck it all into the slow cooker with the beans and broth and just let it go for the day. Simple.
1 Tbsp olive oil
1 medium onion, chopped
1 small green pepper, chopped
1 small red pepper, chopped
2 garlic cloves, minced
2 Tbsp ground cumin
1 cup (180 g) dried black beans
1 tsp chili powder
3 1/2 cups (800 ml) chicken (or veggie) broth
juice of 1/2 lemon
2-3 Tbsp white vinegar
1 Tbsp sugar
tobasco to taste (I use about a Tbsp)
salt and pepper to taste
cilantro, avocado, cumin crème fraiche, and chili salt
For the cumin crème fraiche: mix together 1/2 cup (120 g) crème fraiche, 1 Tbsp whole roasted cumin seeds, ground with a mortar and pestle, salt and pepper
1. Soak the black beans overnight.
2. Heat olive oil in a frying pan and sauté the onions, peppers, garlic, and ground cumin for a couple of minutes until soft.
3. Transfer to a saucepan and add rinsed beans, broth, and chili powder.
4. Simmer, covered, for approximately 3 hours, until the beans are tender.
5. Use immersion blender to puree soup.
6. Add juice from lemon, vinegar, sugar, tobacco, salt and pepper.
7. Serve with all the toppings listed above.