Since winter can’t seem to take the hint that we are so over this weather, I think a warm, hearty soup is in order. I love soup – it is what I live on this time of year and for me it almost makes me like the cold…almost. I mean, who wouldn’t want to curl up on the couch with a warm bowl of soup, a glass of wine, and maybe some House of Cards? Sounds like a perfect evening to me.
This recipe feeds a crowd because I really think you should only make soup in large batches, freezing it in 1-2 person portions so you always have a warm bowl of soup at the ready to get through these months of hibernation.
As the daughter of a proud West-Texan, I love chiles of all kinds and try to sneak them into any dish I can – which was a no-brainer here as black beans and chiles are meant for each other. I used two kinds of peppers in the soup: bell peppers for a touch of sweetness and poblano peppers for some smoky spice.
- BLACK BEAN SOUP
- Yield: 6-7 quarts
- 2 lb black beans, soaked overnight (if possible)
- 3 red bell peppers
- 3 poblano peppers
- 2 yellow onions, diced
- 2 tbl adobo paste from chipotles in adobo* or tomato paste
- ½ cup wine (red or white will work, just something you would drink)
- 8-10 cups water or stock
- salt and pepper
- greek yogurt
- Soak the beans over night if possible – this will just shorten the cook time (a step I can never remember ahead of time and can definitely be left out).
- Char peppers: place peppers directly over burner with flame on high, turning with tongs once blackened on the bottom. Once completely charred place in a bowl and cover with a lid or towel – this allows the peppers to steam which will help in removing the charred skin. (Again, this step can be left out but it adds and wonderful flavor to the soup so I highly recommend trying it).
- Chop onion while the peppers steam for about 15 minutes. To remove the charred skin, hold the stem and scrap with the edge of your knife – you just want to get the majority of the blackened skin, it does not have to be perfect.
- Slice the peppers down the middle and remove the stems and seeds. Chop peppers about the size of your diced onion.
- Heat 2-3 tbl of oil in a large pot, add the onions and a tsp of salt. Sauté onion until translucent, about 10 minutes, then add the peppers and chipotle or tomato paste. Stir and let cook 2 minutes then deglaze with wine.
- Add in the beans and liquid (water or stock). Bring to a boil then reduce to simmer and cook until beans are tender 1-2 hours (depending on if beans were soaked overnight).
- Taste and season with salt and pepper.
- Serve with sliced avocado, chopped cilantro, and a scoop of plain greek yogurt.
- *Chipotle chiles are smoked jalapeños that often come canned in an adobo sauce – I absolutely love the smoky flavor of the adobo, the jalapeños themselves are way to spicy for me, but the sauce around them has just the right amount of heat. Use this instead of tomato paste in soup recipes or to make spicy dressing with greek yogurt (or mayo / sour cream). You can find Chipotle Chiles in Adobo in the Mexican foods section of any grocery store.