I slow-cooked a bag of black beans the other day planning on re-making the black bean soup I wrote about back on January 24th of last year. I prefer slow cooking beans on the stove if I have the time, as I like to monitor the water content, salt, pepper and any herbs and bring the beans only to the softness I want for a particular recipe. For the soup, I wanted a good amount of herbed broth and an el-dente doneness, knowing (thinking) that I was finishing them in the soup.
After I made the beans, I read the recipe and had two problems – first, I had pre-cooked the beans, forgetting that the recipe called for cooking the beans along with the veggies and second, the recipe seemed much more boring than I was craving so – I started over and re-created this soup.
I started with bacon…. cooked up 3 thick slices in my soup pot, took them out when done and cooked my chopped onion, green pepper, red pepper and jalapeno in the bacon grease. I added salt, pepper, pinch of cayenne, bigger pinch of red chili flakes and about a teaspoon of cumin. Then blended in a big tablespoon of hot curry paste.
Once all that was blended and flavorful, I stirred in the beans, juice and all. Next I added chicken broth and simmered for an hour or so – continuing to taste and season as needed.
I served with a dollup of greek yogurt, chopped tomato, avocado, bacon and parsley. I forgot the lime juice and will try to remember that next time – although it was wonderful without.
I finished off with pita bread fried in butter with some salt, pepper and thyme.
We ate it so fast – I think I’m making it again this week… but first, more chicken gumbo.
If you are looking for a healthier and less spicy version of this soup, I recommend the Jan. 24, 2012 blog.