black bean soup (cooking project – day 23)

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I’m realizing that Thursday nights tend to be our comfort food nights. It’s probably because it’s coming to the end of a long work week and we’re not as gung ho about healthy fresco eating and have begun to slack on our diets a bit. It’s also the night for our shows (Big Bang Theory, Office, Parks & Recreation, 30 Rock – woot! woot!) and eating dinner on the couch in front of the TV set requires a certain level of grubaliciousness.

For tonight’s lazy, boob-tube couch night, I made Easy Black Bean Soup based on a recipe that I pulled off of food.com.  I liked it because it had “easy” in the title and the recipe called for canned black beans rather than soaking, heating and re-heating dried beans.

Ingredients:
3 tbsp. olive oil
1 onion, chopped
1 tbsp. grand cumin
2-3 cloves garlic
2 (14 oz.) cans black beans
2 cups chicken/vegetable broth
salt and pepper
some chopped red onion and cilantro for garnish (could also add some cilantro to pot near the end of cooking)

First sauté the onion in the oil over med-low to medium heat. When the onion  starts to soften, add the cumin and continue to cook for 30 seconds. Add the garlic and cook for another 30-60 seconds.  Add one of the cans of black beans and the broth. Bring it all to a simmer and then turn off heat.

Using a hand blender, blend the ingredients in the pot.  You could also try to use a stand alone blender but when I tried to do this, it exploded on me. I think it’s because the soup was hot and the top to my blender is plastic…who knows – science was my worst subject.

Once everything is blended and semi-smooth, add the second can of beans to the pot and bring to a simmer again.  If you like extra cilantro, you can add some at this point. Serve the soup hot with some red onion and cilantro as garnish.

I served the soup with some Blue Chips (so good!) and salsa that we continued to munch on throughout the evening.  Usually black bean soup tends to be a little rich for me but I thought this version had good flavor and wasn’t too overpowering at all. It’s also very filling. My husband who usually eats seconds and sometimes thirds could barely finish the first bowl.  I actually didn’t make enough for leftovers and he’s already asking me to make it again next week.

Tomorrow: Chicken Jalfrezi

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