Black Bean Soup w/Cumin    No. 216                     Yields 5 Servings
 
      1 cup       black beans, soaked                    or to taste
      7 cups      broth (chicken, beef,    1/4 tsp       black pepper, freshly
                  or vegetable)                          ground
      1 tbls      vegetable oil            1/4 tsp       salt, if desired
      1 cup       onion, minced              1           egg, hard-boiled,
      1 tsp       garlic clove, minced                   chopped, or
    1/4 cup       celery, diced              1           egg white and
    1/2 cup       carrots, finely diced                  scallions, chopped for
    3/4 tsp       cumin seed, crushed,                   garnish
 
 Soak the beans by:
 Placing the washed beans in a bowl.
 Cover them with cold water.
 Let them soak overnight or for at least 8 hours.
 
 Or:
 Placing the washed beans in a saucepan.
 Add 4 cups water.
 Bring the beans to a boil.
 Boil for 2 minutes.
 Turn off the heat.
 Let the beans stand for 1 hour.
 
 Drain.
 Add the broth.
 Bring to a boil.
 Reduce the heat to low.
 Partially cover the pan.
 Simmer for 2 to 3 hours or until thoroughly cooked.
 Heat the oil in a heavy skillet.
 Add the onion and garlic.
 Cook, stirring, over a low heat, until transparent.
 Add the celery and carrots.
 Cook, stirring, for a few minutes longer.
 Add to the beans.
 Season with cumin, pepper and salt.
 Simmer for another 30 minutes.
 Puree in a blender, food processor or food mill.
 Garnish with chopped egg and minced scallions.
 Serve hot.