Soup - Day 5 (at last!)

I am not ashamed to tell you that I am a bit sick of soup now. For five days straight we have eschewed regular meals in favour of liquefied meals. I know that you have all enjoyed reading about our five days of soup, but really. Imagine eating just soup for 120 hours. Not literally 120 hours, obviously that would surely give us some kind of Guinness Book of Records award, but every, single night for five days! What was I thinking? Last night all I wanted for dinner was Mashed Potato.

“Can’t we have mashed potato?” I begged Paul, imploringly.

“No! We said five days of soup and that’s what we’re gonna do.”

"Mashed Potato Soup?"


And now, here I sit, Friday night beverage in hand, ice cubes chinking, writing about our final soup of the week.

Surely, I hear you cry, you must have made something startlingly brilliant and original, like lobster bisque with a crabs roe foam or Foie Gras Consomme garnished with the corneas of a Wagyu Cow. Actually, we went for something far heartier, tastier and considerably cheaper than that: Black Bean Soup.

As an indication of how uneducated the British palate still is to Tex Mex food, the bag of black beans, purchased at the weekend, were in the reduced bin. Unfortunately, I suspect it was due to the hugely inflated price of them (£4.99 – equivalent to nearly 10 bucks!) that was the cause of their fall from specialist aisle darling to dumpster bin reject.

Still, Tescos loss is our gain. The soup was a breeze to make, prepped in just 10 minutes flat. 90 minutes later and the soup was ready to serve. I didn’t even use a recipe, I simply prepared them as I do Puy Lentils, but adding a couple of red hot dried chilis and a good pinch of freshly ground toasted cumin seeds.

When ready it resembled crude oil, studded with tiny, shiny pieces of obsidian. A most beautiful soup, made even more stunning with a sprinkling of spring onion, coriander and sour cream.

Paul said that this was his favourite soup of the week and not Day 1 after all. Well, if it has the words Tex or Mex in the recipe, he's happy. Incidentally, this is my entry for A Veggie Ventures Soup's On event. There have been so many great soup recipes so far!

BLACK BEAN SOUP serves 4-6

400g Black Beans, soaked overnight
1 Large Onion, finely chopped
2 Cloves Garlic, finely chopped
1 Stick Celery, finely chopped
2 Teaspoons Cumin
2 Dried Chilis (small, hot ones)
1.5 Litres Beef Stock (I used cubes)
20g Lard or equivalent vegetable oil
1 Teaspoon Dried Oregano or Epazote
Spring Onion, Sour Cream, grated Cheddar for garnishing

Drain the soaked beans and rinse well.
In a large saucepan or stock pot, melt the lard and gently cook the onion and garlic until soft. Add the celery and cook for a couple minutes more.
Stir in the beans, chilis, cumin and oregano. DO NOT SALT AT THIS STAGE!
Cover with the stock and bring to the boil.
Turn down to a gently simmer, cover and leave for about an hour and a half.
The stock will have turned a rich, black colour when ready and the beans will be tender.
Now you can add the salt. If you salt the beans before cooking, they will stay hard.
Once you have seasoned it to your satisfaction, serve in deep bowls sprinkled with chopped spring onion, sour cream and grated cheese. Paul split taco shells, covered them with grated cheese and grilled them as a large 'garnish' for his soup!


Margaret said...

Hello Freya - I really enjoy reading your foodblog and I have added you to my blogroll. Hope this is ok. Mx

MyKitchenInHalfCups said...

That is fancy tex-mex garnish just like they do in texas! I love black beans! Your soup is glorious.

Kathryn said...

I like black beans! (4.99 is daylight robbery though)

The soup looks gorgeous. When are you going to start eating solids again? Today? What is the next Paul and Freya food theme? I wait eagerly.

Kathryn x

Lydia said...

Black bean soup is one of my absolute favorites -- and it's such a nice way to end your soup week. You can freeze any leftovers, and enjoy them when you're ready to try soup again!

Monika Korngut said...

I like your soup challenge!! Great idea and the soups look delicious.

All the best,

Monika Korngut

Alanna said...

I so feel your pain! When I set off to do a month of nothing but soup posts (not every day) I had no idea how old it would get! It's soup right, the food with a million variations? Anyway I'm so glad you joined the Soup's On party, I'm quite sure that this is the first entry with black beans!

Melting Wok said...

beans it is !! yummy-o, one order of freya's fine bean soup with some leftover tortillas sitting in my fridge plzzzzzzz ? *grins* Cheers !:)

Joyce said...

More than glorious - this soup and the images thereof are stupendous!
Nothing like finishing the week with a bang. And I'm reading this while famished! Sheer torture!

Susan said...

Mmmm does this black bean soup look satisfying and delicious! Now when are you gonna make the mashed potato soup? ;)

Kristen said...

Well, of all five days, I think this is my favorite! I love black beans... love them! This looks so good!

I'd be a bit tired of soup too after 5 days, however I haven't tired of reading your posts and seeing your yummy pictures!

valentina said...

Freya, what a lovely soup.We eat quite a lot of beans in Brasil where i was born, and black bean soup is a big thing. We would sometimes add bits of sausages to it too. I jsut loved this post. made me home sick.

Gattina said...

It is a truimphant finale for sure! Fantastic soups Freya!

Gourmet Peasant said...

Wow! That soup looks so good and reminds me of being in Mexico.
I love your blog! And all your soups, though now I am starving now and must go in search of food.