This soup is simple and delicious. It has such a basic –not plain– flavor that it can stand a lot of variations. Read some of my suggestions below to jazz it up a little for when you have a little more time.
Black Bean Soup of the Busy Person
2 cups dry black beans
2 carrots, peeled and roughly chopped
1 small onion, roughly chopped
1 garlic clove cut in fourths
1 small strip kombu seaweed (optional, but encouraged) *
Olive oil to taste
1 tsp salt
½ tsp pepper
Pressure cooker (if you don’t have one, you could use a large pot, but it will take a lot longer to cook your beans)
Blender (I prefer an immersion or hand blender)
1- The evening before wash the beans, and leave them soaking overnight. This not only will make the beans more tender and quicker to cook, but they’ll also start to germinate –look for the little tails growing out of them– ridding them of purines, a naturally occurring toxin that makes digesting beans difficult.
2- When you are ready drain the water from the beans.
3- Add the olive oil to the pressure cooker and sauté the onion and garlic in it over medium heat. Add the beans and water so that it covers them about 1 inch. Add the rest of the vegetables, seaweed, salt and pepper.
4- Close the pressure cooker, and turn it to the highest pressure setting. Turn the heat to high and let it get pressurized. Lower to simmer and let it cook for about 40 minutes.
5- Let the steam out completely, open the pressure cooker and carefully taste your beans. They should be very tender. Adjust your seasoning. Using a hand blender, or a regular blender, blend the beans and vegetables until there is no chucks, but the soup is thick.
6- Serve and enjoy.
*Note: The seaweed not only is super healthy, as it is full of minerals, but it also makes legumes a lot easier to digest. It won’t give out any flavor, so don’t worry about that. You can find kombu in the health food area of most supermarkets or online.
1- To add some spice to the beans, add 1 tbsp of dry oregano and 1 chipotle pepper to the pot, remove the pepper before blending unless you like food extremely hot. Serve with a dollop of sour cream, chopped cilantro and tortilla chips.
2- For a Caribbean feel, serve with coconut rice and chopped cilantro. Seriously addictive.