Monday, February 8, 2010

Black Bean Soup

Black Bean Soup

1 T olive oil
8 large cloves garlic, minced
1 1/2 C diced carrots (about 3 med carrots)
1 1/2 C diced celery (about 4 ribs)
1 1/2 C diced onion (about 1 med onion) 
3 cans black beans, rinsed and drained
6 oz can green chilies
3 cans low-sodium beef broth
2 t kosher salt
2 dash black pepper
1 t chili powder
1/2 t cumin
1 t dry oregano leaves (if you use ground oregano, use 1/2 t)
1 1/2  bay leaf
Serves 6-8

Toppings: sour cream, tortilla chips, grated cheese
I began slicing and chopping and ended up slicing off a little too much of my thumb - that was fun! - so I gave up slicing since I really quite enjoy my fingers and used my food processor to chop the carrots, celery and onions.  It worked great.  I didn't get them too fine just chopped enough to our liking.

Add olive oil to a large stock pot on med-high heat. Saute carrots, celery, onion, and garlic about 4-5 minutes.

Add in the black beans, chilies, and beef broth. Stir to combine and then add the salt, pepper, chili powder, cumin, oregano, and bay leaf.

Simmer uncovered for about 20-25 minutes or until carrots are soft.

Remove from heat. Find that bay leaf and pull it out. I forgot to get it out *gasp* and it still tasted great but STILL don't do what I did and remember to take it out. 

Place half of the soup in a blender.  If you want it more pureed then put all the soup in the blender.  We liked it with some chunks.  Especially since my kids gave some great comparisons to all things brown and chunky - while polishing their bowls and asking for seconds I might add. Place lid on blender, but remove the stopper in the middle. Place a paper towel over the hole though to avoid getting black bean soup burns all over your face. That would be an embarrassing story to tell.  Plus a HUGE mess to clean up.

Puree soup until smooth. I leave it in for several minutes. Return to pan and make sure it's heated through completely. Squeeze in the juice from two big limes.

Ladle into bowls and top with grated cheese, tortilla chips, etc. Serve with extra lime wedges.  Even though it is brown and chunky my whole family gobbled it up and said it was the best soup EVER.  I took that as a real compliment that they could get past the color and just taste the goodness of this soup.

Nutritional Information (1 C soup, w/o toppings):
125 calories, 2g fat, 8g fiber
2 Weight Watchers points
South Beach Diet Phase 2 (eat carrots sparingly)