For my older son’s second birthday party, I wanted to do something heartwarming and cozy. It was the end of January and the Boston weather that year had been brutal. Piles of snow had been capped with a thick sheet of ice, leaving people trying to figure out how to chip ice blocks off of their roofs. I remember my mom saying that five stores in her town were out of ice-melt on one particularly depressing day. We were all in need of a comfy party. Plus, I needed to go simple–because I was pregnant (and sick!) with my second baby. The moral of the story is, black bean soup cured all! Well, maybe not. But people really seemed to like it. And I am (almost) ashamed of how easy it is to make.
|Black Bean Soup|| |
- 1 teaspoon vegetable oil
- 1 teaspoon dark chili powder
- 1 teaspoon smoked Spanish paprika
- ¼ teaspoon cumin
- 3 15.5-oz. cans black beans, drained and rinsed in a colander or strainer
- 2½ cups low-sodium chicken broth (Vegetable broth can be easily substituted for this recipe to become vegan.) I use Swanson Natural Goodness Chicken Broth or Nature's Promise Organic Vegetable Broth.
- 1½ cups frozen corn
- 1 lime
- Optional garnishes: Shredded cheddar cheese, chopped scallion--green parts only, hot sauce, sour cream, tortilla chips, pickled jalapenos, hot cooked jasmine rice
- Optional special equipment: Immersion blender
- Place your Dutch oven or stockpot over medium-high heat and add vegetable oil, chili powder, smoked paprika and cumin. Let the spices toast for 1 or 2 minutes, until they become aromatic.
- Add two-thirds of the drained and rinsed beans and stir them well to coat them with the spice mixture.
- Add chicken or vegetable broth. Bring to boil and then reduce to a simmer for 5 minutes, just to soften the beans a little more.
- Move the pot off the heat momentarily and use your immersion blender to blend the soup right in the pot. Or, use a potato masher to mash the mixture and you get a similar effect! (I used this technique when my blender was in the sink and I didn't want to wash it yet.)
- Return the pot to the heat, add the remaining beans and corn. Cook for 2 minutes to heat through.
- Squeeze in the juice of at least half a lime, up to a whole lime depending on how much you like and how juicy your lime is.
- Taste for seasoning. May need a little salt, but probably not much.
- Serve with garnishes you love, enjoy!