Sunday, September 05, 2004

Soup for Supper

I’ve been really busy this week, so I’ve been eating leftovers and prepared food from the grocery store. Last night I finally had a chance to cook but wasn’t up for something terribly complicated. I flipped through a cookbook that just happened to be out by my computer and came upon a recipe for black bean soup that sounded good. I decided on a supper of soup, salad and muffins.

The recipe for black bean soup is from Moosewood Restaurant Cooks at Home: Fast and Easy Recipes for Any Day. I’ve had the book for a while, but have not cooked much from it. I happened to have the book out because I had recently emailed an icing recipe from it to a friend. The icing goes with the “Six Minute Chocolate Cake” which, as you might deduce from the name, is very easy and also very good. I made the cake over a year ago and I don’t think I had used the book since then. As I was getting the link at Amazon just now, I noticed that the book has a five-star rating with 33 reviewers – guess I need to refer to this book a little more often!

Black bean soup is something I’ve always thought I should like – after all, I love black beans – but, I’ve never had one that I really enjoyed. I have tried making it myself a couple of times and had it once in a local coffee shop, but each time found it to be somewhere between boring and unpleasant. This recipe caught my eye because it had almost equal amounts of black beans and tomatoes. It also uses a technique that I really like: about half the soup is pureed and stirred back into the pot creating a thick, hearty soup that is still chunky. There is a fair amount of chopping to do, but the soup goes together quickly and easily.

I had just about all the ingredients on hand. There was one ingredient though that I had never cooked with: sun dried tomatoes (the dry ones, not the ones in oil). I wondered as I prepared the soup, what these would add to the soup in the way of flavor. Even after having eaten the soup, I’m still not certain. The soup was delicious and there was something about the flavor that was more than I expected. There was almost a slight sweetness, which may have come from the sun dried tomatoes, but could also have come from the canned tomatoes. I’m tempted to prepare it again without the sun dried tomatoes and taste the two side by side.

Before the soup I had a simple green salad and alongside the soup I had my very own Pumpkin Corn Meal Muffins. I stuck a DVD in the DVD player, got comfy on the sofa and enjoyed my home cooked meal.


Anonymous said...

Ooohh...I absolutely love black bean's one of my very favorite foods. I agree with you that it's never quite as good at restaurants, bakeries, and delis. I love nothing more than taking up an entire Sunday afternoon cooking up a big pot of black bean soup. I have to admit that I actually use a black bean soup's called "Bean Cuisine: Island Black Bean Soup". It provides you with the dried beans, seasonings, and directions, and you provide the veggies, chopping and work. It is the type of thing you can throw anything into it and it still tastes great. I encourage you to give it a try if you feel like wasting a whole afternoon on it! : )

Otherwise, this recipe you tried sounds easier, quicker and also mighty tasty!


Cathy said...

Hi Alice! This recipe is especially easy because (as you probably guessed) it uses canned beans. I think I've seen that mix in the store - if so, I'll definitely give it a try!