*  Exported from  MasterCook II  *
 
                          Ouisie’s BLACK BEAN SOUP
 
 Recipe By     : Ouisie’s Table
 Serving Size  : 6    Preparation Time :0:00
 Categories    : Soups & Stews                    Beans
 
   Amount  Measure       Ingredient -- Preparation Method
 --------  ------------  --------------------------------
    1      pound         black beans -- dry
    1                    yellow onion -- peeled, cored and
                          -- cut in 6 wedges
    4      whole         cloves -- stuck into one of
                          -- the onion wedges
    1      large         clove of garlic -- with a toothpick
                          -- stuck through it so
                          -- you can remove it
                          -- easily
    2                    bay leaves
    3      cups          chicken broth -- fresh, canned or
                          -- dehydrated (taste
                          -- whichever you
                          -- choose and salt
                          -- accordingly)
    2      tablespoons   cumin seeds
    1      tablespoon    olive oil
    3                    carrots -- washed but not
                          -- peeled, and chopped
    3                    celery stalks and leaves -- washed and chopped
    3      cloves        garlic -- peeled and finely
                          -- chopped
    1      tablespoon    thyme -- dry
      1/2  teaspoon      chili flakes
    6      tablespoons   Sour cream -- preferably at room
                          -- temperature and
                          -- stirred so it
                          -- spoons nicely
                         Fresh cilantro -- washed and spun dry
                         Green onions -- finely chopped
                         Wide juicy lime wedges
 
 The night before, wash the beans thoroughly in a colander and pick
 out the rocks and earth and the occasional malformed specimen. Place
 them in a bowl, with enough fresh, cold water to cover them by 3 inches,
 and set aside. The next day, drain the beans and put them in a large
 soup pot. Cover with cold water and turn the burner on low. As the beans
 heat, foam will rise to the surface; skim this off with a large cooking
 spoon, and repeat until all the foam is gone. (Don't let the pot boil,
 because if you do. the skins will start to slip off and the beans won't
 hold their shape well as they cook.)
 Add the onion wedges, the garlic and the bay leaves. Simmer, stirring
 occasionally and adding water when the liquid gets low. When the beans
 are tender (this takes from one to three hours), remove the onion wedges
 and garlic. Now spoon out half of the beans, allow to cool, and puree in
 a food processor with the chicken broth. Return the mixture to the pot.
 Add salt to taste and simmer while you prepare the vegetables.
 Toast the cumin seeds in a non-oiled saute pan and grind them with a
 mortar and pestle or in an electric spice-grinder.  Heat the oil in the
 same pan and cook the carrots, celery, and garlic until translucent.
 Add the cumin, thyme and chili flakes, and stir. Add the vegetables to
 the bean pot, deglaze the pan with a little dry Vermouth or water, and
 add this liquid to the beans also. Check the seasoning, simmer another
 10 minutes, and your soup is ready.
 Serve the soup in heated bowls so that even the last bite will be
 warm. Top each serving with a teaspoon of Sour cream, chopped green
 onion and cilantro, and add a lime wedge on the side for squeezing into
 the soup. (Be sure to instruct your guests to do this, or they'll miss
 
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