Southwest Black Bean Soup

Lisa’s Easy Vegetarian Version
Serves 8

6 c. water
1 lb. dried black beans-picked over and rinsed
24 oz. jar of picante sauce ( I use mild Pace)
3 T. chili powder
2 tbl. chopped fresh cilantro
Plain yogurt

Add beans to water, bring to a boil, and boil 2 minutes. Lower to simmer, simmer covered until beans are tender, about 2 1/2 hours. Add picante sauce, chili powder, and fresh cilantro and bring back to simmer.  (If you don’t have fresh,  leave the cilantro out; dried doesn’t have the flavor, and there is cilantro in the picante.)

Top each bowl with a few tablespoons of yogurt if you like.  Cubed cooked ham or sliced kielbasa can be added at the end for non-vegetarians.

Reheats and freezes well.

 

The original:

Southwest Black Bean Soup
Serves 8.

1 large onion-chopped
4 cloves garlic
2 tbl. vegetable oil
1 lb. dried black beans-picked over and rinsed
2 cups cubed, fully-cooked ham-(12 oz.)
6 cups chicken stock
1 can canned whole tomatoes with their juice, broken with a spoon
1 canned chipotle chile in adobo sauce or pickled jalapeno chile- chopped (1 tbsp.)
2 tbl. ground red chilies
2 tbl. chopped fresh cilantro
1 tbl. oregano
2 tsp. ground cumin

Quick Creme Fraiche

Cook onion and garlic in oil in 4-quart Dutch oven over medium heat, stirring frequently, until onion is tender, about six minutes. Add black beans, ham, chicken broth, tomatoes, chipotle, ground red chiles, cilantro, oregano and cumin. Bring to boiling, boil 2 minutes. Lower to simmer, cover and simmer until beans are tender, about 2 1/2 hours.

Pour 3 cups of the soup into workbowl of food processor or blender and whirl until smooth. Repeat with remaining soup.

Serve garnished with Quick Creme Fraiche and sweet red pepper. For an extra-special presentation, spoon on the creme fraiche in the shape of a cactus. Serves 8.

Quick Creme Fraiche: Place 2/3 cup dairy sour cream in a small bowl. Gradually stir in 1/3 cup heavy cream. Cover and refrigerate for 2 to 48 hours.

Cooking Time
Start to Finish………3 hours

 

 

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