Wednesday, February 27, 2013

Soup #8 / Black Bean Soup

You Will Need
2 cans of black beans 
1/2 an onion, chopped
2-3 cloves of garlic
Chicken bones/what is left to make chicken stock, or shredded chicken meat
1 cup chicken broth
1 tsp cumin
Salt and Pepper to taste
Cheese to top it off

How to make it:
This soup is super simple if you are in a bind and need a fast dinner. I was falling behind on soup making (this wasn't supposed to happen until mid-june!!) and I needed something quick to whip up before heading off to work, and it was a success. 

You can start the soup off two separate ways. If you have scraps of chicken and chicken bones left from earlier in the week, go ahead and boil it in water with 1/2 and onion, chopped into big chunks, and a few cloves of garlic. Boil for about 1 hour. Remove the chicken and set aside to cool. Save about 1 cup of broth for the soup, and jar the rest in the refrigerator or freezer to use another time.  OR... you can saute the onion and garlic in a pan with some oil to cook it up a bit, and have a cup on broth and some shredded chicken on the side to add later. 

In a medium sauce pan, pour two cans of black beans, juice and all. Cook on medium heat until warm. If you made broth, pull out some of the onion chunks and garlic cloves (as much as you'd like depending on how oniony/garlicy you want it) and add it to the black beans, stirring occasionally. Add the cup of broth, and continue to stir. When the soup is warm, remove from heat and use and immersion blender to partially blend the soup. You don't want to puree it completely, but enough so the soup becomes thicker and still has some bean chunks in it as well.  When you've finished. Return the soup to medium heat and add the shredded chicken. Heat until it's at serving temperature and enjoy!

The Verdict:  This soup was pretty good... a lot more filling than we expected. I thought it would be good to pair it with some mini quesadillas and while that was super yummy, we couldn't finish it all. It was a quick and easy dinner and we both really enjoyed it.  Word to the wise - take a few Bean-o before enjoying. :)

What we'd do differently: Looking back, I wouldn't have made the chicken broth, but rather sauteed up the onion and garlic first, like I mentioned above. I had a chicken in the fridge, so it made sense at the time, but it wasn't really worth it for the amount of broth that I really needed. Also, this soup may not have been as filling if the chicken was omitted. It was a good addition, but not necessary,  especially if this isn't the main course. We had it again yesterday with homemade tacos, and it was a bit much having the chicken in there too.  Regardless, it was a yummy soup that I would definitely make again.