Black Bean Soup

Version I

Black Bean Soup


  • 1 Tbs. vegetable or canola oil
  • 1 large onion, finely chopped
  • 3 cloves garlic, minced
  • 2 jalapeño peppers, seeded and minced
  • 1 bay leaf, fresh or dried
  • 1 Tsp. ground coriander
  • 1.5 Tsp. cumin
  • Coarse salt, to taste
  • 2 cans black beans, drained and rinsed
  • 1 can (14.5 Oz) vegetable or chicken broth
  • 1 can (14.5 Oz) crushed tomatoes
  • 1/2 cup masa mixed thoroughly in 4 Oz. cold water
  • 4 scallions, sliced thinly on an angle
  • Tortilla chips for garnish

Sour Cream Sauce Ingredients:

  • 8 Oz. sour cream/yogurt; Greek-style yogurt from Trader Joe's works great.
  • 1 – 2 Oz. cayenne pepper sauce/hot sauce
  • Handful fresh cilantro

Soup Instructions:

  • Heat oil in a deep pot over medium to medium-high heat
  • Add onion, garlic, jalapeños, and bay leaf
  • Season with coriander, cumin, and a little salt.
  • Add beans, crushed tomatoes, and broth and bring to a boil.
  • Reduce heat and simmer, 5 Min.
  • Add masa-water mix; while stirring, pour the mix in a slow, steady stream.
  • Serve in bowls topped with fresh scallions with tortilla chips on the side, for dipping.

For Sour Cream Sauce:

  • Combine sour cream, cayenne pepper sauce, and cilantro in a food processor and pulse-grind into a smooth sauce.
  • Place a dollop of the sauce on top of the soup in the center of the bowl, garnish with a bit of cilantro or mint.

Version II

This is a more traditional version of the soup from a restaurant - cut down the portions to more closely resemble your reality.

The Fixin's...
  • 1 pound dried black beans
  • 10 cups chicken stock
  • 4 tablespoons unsalted butter
  • 2 ribs celery, finely chopped
  • 2 medium onions, finely chopped
  • 1 clove garlic, crushed
  • 1-1/2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
  • 1 bay leaf
  • Freshly ground black pepper
  • salt
  • 1/2 cup Madeira wine (optional)
  • Garnishes:
  • lemon slices
  • Chopped onion
  • Chopped tomato
  • Cooked rice
  1. Wash the beans. Place in a large pot and add cold water to cover. Let soak overnight, or boil the beans in 6 to 8 cups of hot water for 2 minutes, then set aside for 1 hour.
  2. Drain the beans and place them in a large pot. Add the chicken stock and bring to a boil. Reduce the heat to low, and simmer for 1 1/2 hours, adding more water if necessary.
  3. In another pot, melt the butter over moderate heat. Add the celery, onions, and garlic and sauté until softened, but not browned, 8 to 10 minutes.
  4. Stir in the flour and cook, stirring constantly, for 1 minute.
  5. Stir the vegetable mixture into the beans. Add the bay leaf and pepper to taste. Cover and simmer, stirring occasionally, over low heat for 2 to 3 hours. Check occasionally, and add water if the beans are not completely covered with liquid.
  6. Remove and discard the bay leaf. Add salt to taste. Puree the soup through a food mill, food processor, or blender until smooth.
  7. Return the soup to the pot and add the Madeira, if desired. Reheat the soup and correct the seasoning. Garnish each portion with a lemon slice, or serve with chopped onion, chopped tomato, and cooked rice.