>Chuck’s Black Bean Soup

>He heard it first on Wisconsin Public Radio courtesy of Zorba Paster on Your Health. Then he went online and found another variation that wasn’t quite as spicy. Finally, he made the recipe his own. Yes, like me, Chuck likes to play in the kitchen and modify recipes to fit our own family tastes. He served this as part of Thanksgiving dinner, but it’s a great soup for any cold or dreary winter day.

Chuck’s Black Bean Soup
Ingredients:
2 Tablespoons vegetable oil
3/4 cup white pearl onions, peeled
1/2 cup diced celery
1/2 cup diced carrots
3/4 cup green bell peppers
2 Tablespoons minced garlic
3 (15 oz.) cans black beans (He used Bush’s regular, plain style)
1 (15 oz.) can garbanzo beans
4 cups chicken stock
2 Tablespoons taragon vinegar (can substitute another vinegar if desired)
1 teaspoon chili powder
1/2 teaspoon cayenne pepper
1/2 teaspoon cumin
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon hickory liquid smoke
Garnish: chopped green onions, sour cream
Directions:
1. Hear 2 Tablespoons of oil in a large saucepan over medium/low heat.
2. Add onion, celery, carrot, bell pepper, and garlic to the oil and simmer slowly for 15 minutes. Keep heat low wnough that the veggies don’t brown; be careful not to burn the garlic or it will be bitter.
3. While you cook the veggies, pour the garbanzo beans into a strainer and rinse them under cold water. Set aside.
4. Pour 3 cans of black beans into strainer and rinse under cold water.
5. Measure 3 cups of the drained and strained black beans into a food processor or blender with 1 cup of chicken stock. Puree on high speed until smooth.
6. When the veggies are ready, pour the pureed black beans, the whole beans (black & garbanzo), the rest of the chicken stock, and every other ingredient in the list (down to the liquid smoke) to the pot.
7. Bring mixture to a boil, then reduce heat and simmer uncovered for 50-60 minutes or until soup has thickened and all the ingredients are tender.
8. Pour mixture into crockpot and warm for 4 hours.
Chuck notes: Steps 1-7 can be done the day before and refrigerated overnight. He and Amigo did that Wednesday evening and warmed the soup in the crock pot while the turkey was cooking.
My opinion: delicious. This one’s a keeper. So is Chuck, for that matter.
And in other news, the winner of the Lulu photo book was Kim Moldofsky! Kim, I’ll send you more information soon. Congratulations!

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