So there are some black bean soups that are good. There are others that are bad. Really, really bad. Well, maybe “bad” is more a matter of opinion, but bad in terms of being so spicy, thick, or gloopy [or all of the above] that the soup, if you can even call it that, is basically an inedible paste of nastyness. Mmm. Appetizing to ponder on a Friday, huh? Yeahhh. Well good news here, folks!
And boy… do I mean it.
Thick–but not too pasty. Eww, pasty. Chunky–but with a good mix of broth and texture. Spicy–but not run gasping to the fridge for milk out of control spicy. Full of veggies like onion and tomatoes and even spinach [hello spinach… you hid from Ben until his bowl was gone and then when I told him about you he was unaware… like, completely]–but yes, not too full of veggies that you forget it’s black bean soup. The black beans are still there, and serve as the perfect backdrop to a rich, garlic-y flavor to contrast with the spice. Finish each bowl off with a squeeze of lime juice and you have yourself a wonderful winner of a soup that is absolutely perfect in every way.
Perfect. And not too perfect. Wait… is there even such a thing? If this is any indication, Ben and I polished off the entire pot of this in one night, during an episode of Mad Men. Normally we’re all about the leftovers here for lunches, but this time there was no chance of leftovers. Not a one. So I guess it’s imperfection is that there was not enough. Be forewarned–next time this is on our menu, it will be in double batch form. Cause this is slurp-worthy delicious!
Black Bean Soup Like You Mean It
from You Can Trust a Skinny Cook by Allison Fishman
- 2 tablespoons canola oil
- 1 cup onion, chopped
- 4 cloves garlic, minced
- 1 1/2 teaspoons cumin
- 1 teaspoon chili powder
- 3 1/2 cups black beans, rinsed and drained [from scratch or from 2 – 15 1/2 ounce cans], divided
- 2 cups chicken broth, divided
- 2 cups baby spinach, tightly packed
- 10 ounce can diced tomatoes with green chilis
- cilantro, for serving
- lime wedges, for serving
In a medium pot or dutch oven, heat the oil over medium heat. Add onion and cook for 3-4 minutes or until soft, stirring frequently. Add garlic and cook for a minute more until fragrant. Stir in cumin and chili powder and cook for another 30 seconds. Meanwhile, stir in 2 1/2 cups of black beans and 1 cup chicken broth. In a food processor, puree remaining 1 cup black beans, 1 cup chicken broth, and spinach until smooth. Pour into the soup pot, then add tomatoes and stir well. Bring to a boil and then reduce heat to a simmer, cooking for an additional 5 minutes. Serve garnished with cilantro and a squeeze of lime juice.