Smokey Goodness In A Bowl

This everlasting heat in the valley has worn out its welcome in my book. I’m ready for sweatshirts, blankets, and soups, already! So much so that I’ve bumped my AC down a notch and decided to attempt a black bean soup. I’ve never made one before, but after doing a little research I had a plan.

My mom uses hickory smoked salt in our poquito beans recipe, so that inspired me to make a smokey black bean soup.

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SMOKEY BLACK BEAN SOUP

1 lb dry black beans
2 Tbsp olive oil
1/2 large onion, chopped
1 each: green, red, yellow bell pepper, chopped
2 cloves garlic, minced or shaved
1 Tbsp chili powder
2 tsp cumin
1 Tbsp hickory smoked salt
1/2 tsp cayenne
Salt & pepper to taste
6 c stock or broth (I used chicken, but for a vegetarian meal, vegetable stock would work)
Avocado, cilantro, sour cream or plain greek yogurt for garnish

Rinse and sort the beans – remove any bad beans and rocks. Soak beans overnight in about 8 cups of water. Or do the quick soak method: put beans and 8 cups of water on to boil. Boil rapidly for 2 minutes, remove from heat, cover and let stand for 1 hour. RINSE WELL when they’re done. This will remove a lot of that unwelcome toot juice.

In a large soup pot, or Dutch oven, heat oil over medium heat. Sauté the onions till translucent. Add peppers and garlic. Sauté until soft. Add chili powder, cumin, smoked salt, and cayenne, stir. Add the beans and broth to the pot. Add salt and pepper to taste. Heat over medium low heat, covered, for 1 1/2 to 2 hours or until beans have reached your desired tenderness.

Remove from heat. I like to use my immersion blender in the pot to blend the soup. If you don’t have an immersion blender, get one. Just kidding! (But really, though, they’re awesome) So if you don’t have an immersion blender, put a few ladles of the soup into a blender and blend till smooth. Do this for as much as you want blended. Be careful about blending hot liquids – only do a little at a time.

*Note: if you want to make this a more hearty meal, grill up some chicken, dice it and throw it in with the soup at the end.

Nutrition:
(4 – 2 cup servings)
Calories – 138
Total Fat – 8 g
Cholesterol – 0 mg
Sodium – 1708 mg
Potassium – 184 mg
Total Carbohydrates – 15 g
Dietary Fiber – 6 g
Sugars – 4 g
Protein – 6 g

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