Who doesn’t crave a bowl of black bean soup on a cold night? Warm, comforting, nutritious, flavorful – it’s impossible not to have seconds. This black bean soup is all of that and more: the pan-roasted poblano peppers and the chipotle bring a warm spiciness, while the crispy shoestring tortillas add an irresistible crunchy bite.
One last touch: a dash of Tequila and lime juice, added to the soup just before serving, make all those flavors a little brighter.
All in all it’s a pretty delicious soup!
Food & wine pairing: Abruzzo, Montepulciano with black bean soup
With this soup, you want to serve a red wine with medium tannins and a bit of spice, like a Montepulciano from Abruzzo in central Italy or a Primitivo from Puglia.
Black bean soup with pan-roasted poblano peppers and crispy shoestring tortillas
serves 4 to 6
active time: 40 min
For the soup
- 3 tablespoons olive oil
- 3 medium poblano peppers (12 oz) (340 g) – seeded and diced in 1/4″ cubes (2 cups)
- 1 medium Spanish or Vidalia onion – peeled and diced in 1/4″ cubes (2 cups)
- 4 garlic cloves – skinned and minced
- 1 tablespoon chili powder
- 1/4 to 1/2 teaspoon ground chipotle to taste
- 2 medium carrots (4 oz) (115 g) – seeded and diced in 1/4″ cubes (3/4 cup)
- 5 cups cooked black beans – drained
- 6 cups reserved cooking liquid from the beans or water
- 1 1/4 to 1 1/2 teaspoons sea salt to taste
- 1 tablespoon lime juice
- 1 tablespoon tequila
For the garnishes
- 4 corn tortillas
- 3 tablespoons sunflower or canola oil
- large pinch sea salt
- 2 tablespoons crème fraîche or low-fat sour cream
- 1/4 cup finely chopped fresh cilantro
- Step 1: Heat a large heavy-bottomed soup pot at medium-high heat. Add the olive oil and poblano peppers. Sauté for 2 minutes until the peppers soften. Add the onions and sauté for 7 to 8 minutes, until golden-brown. Add the garlic, chili powder, chipotle and carrots. Sauté for 1 minute. Add the black beans, reserved cooking liquid and salt.
- Step 2: Bring the soup to a boil. Reduce heat to medium to medium-low, cover and simmer for 20 to 25 minutes, until carrots are tender. Purée the soup with a stick blender or food processor so that it’s creamy, but still a bit chunky. Add the lime juice and Tequila. Adjust the salt and thin the soup with additional water if needed.
- Step 3: Cut the corn tortillas in half. Cut each half in 1/8″ julienne strips. Heat a large skillet to high heat. Add the oil and the tortilla strips and reduce the heat to medium-high. Toss well so that the tortilla strips are well coated with the oil and spread them over the whole surface of the pan. Sauté for 6 to 8 minutes until the strips are golden, tossing occasionally. Remove from heat and spread on a tray lined with paper towels. Sprinkle with sea salt and let cool to room temperature. Ladle soup in bowls. Spoon a small dollop of crème fraîche or sour cream in the center of each bowl. Sprinkle with the cilantro, top with the shoestring tortillas and serve.
- Cook’s note: The tortilla strips can be made up to 3 days ahead. Store at room temperature in a sealed container.
- Served in elegant sherry glasses, this black bean soup makes a gorgeous and stylish hors d’oeuvre… Ladle the warmed soup in a measuring cup and pour in small sherry glasses. Garnish with a cilantro leaf and a dollop of crème fraîche or sour cream. You’ll want to thin the soup with a little water when serving it this way so that it’s a bit more liquidy and easier for your guests to sip. Bottoms up!