Showing posts with label Mexican Food. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Mexican Food. Show all posts

Sunday, May 5, 2019

Easy Taco Soup: Vegetarian for Cinco de Mayo and Souper (Soup, Salad & Sammie) Sundays

I was undecided about what soup to make this week and decided that since today is Cinco de Mayo, I would throw together an easy and vegetarian Taco Soup


To make this soup, basically a deconstructed taco, I happened to have a package of Lightlife Smart Ground Mexican Crumbles in my fridge, but if you don't do soy you could certainly use any ground meat or keep it veggie by chopping up and browning mushrooms.This soup can also be made vegan by switching to vegan cheese and sour cream in the toppings. Speaking of the toppings, they of course make the soup, so pick as many of your favorite taco fixins' as you want or can fit in the bowl, and be sure to fry up some corn tortillas cut into strips for the crunch.


Easy Taco Soup
By Deb, Kahakai Kitchen
(Serves 6) 

1 tbsp olive oil
1 (12 oz) package soy crumbles of choice or ground meat or chopped mushrooms
4 green onions, white and green parts divided and chopped
1 medium sweet onion, diced
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 package taco seasoning mix of choice (I use this one by Simply Organic)
1 tsp ground cumin
1 tsp dried chipotle pepper or pepper of choice, to taste
1 tsp dried oregano
1 can minced green chiles (I used mild)
4 cups low-sodium veggie broth + 2 cups water
1 can diced fire-roasted tomatoes with juices
1 can creamed corn
1/2 cup nutritional yeast (optional)
1 cup corn kernels, fresh or frozen
2 cans low-sodium pinto beans or beans of choice 
juice of 1 lime
sea salt & freshly ground black pepper

Toppings: corn tortillas cut into strips and fried, shredded lettuce, grated cheese, black olives, avocado, chopped green onions, cilantro leaves, lime wedges, Tabasco or hot sauce of choice, etc. 

Heat the oil in a large soup pot over medium heat. Add soy crumbles, white part of green onions and diced sweet onion and saute, breaking apart the soy crumbles with a wooden spoon. Cook until onions are softened, stirring frequently, about 5 minutes. Add garlic, taco seasoning, cumin, chipotle pepper, oregano and green chiles and saute for about 2 minutes. Add veggie broth and stir in tomatoes, creamed corn, nutritional yeast (if using), corn kernels and beans and bring soup to a boil.

Reduce heat and simmer soup for about 15 minutes. Add lime juice, taste for seasoning and add sea salt and black pepper to taste. 

Ladle into bowls and top with your toppings of choice. Enjoy!

 
Notes/Results: Nothing fancy, nothing difficult, but a really good soup especially if you are a toppings fanatic like me. You can't see all of the toppings that well in the picture and I forgot the sour cream in the fridge but the lettuce, cheese (grated jack and cheddar mix), avocado, green onions, cilantro, black olives, extra lime juice and crispy tortilla chips was perfect. Next time I might add pickled jalapenos. I kept my soup fairly mild and added Tabasco upon serving but you can spice it up as much as you want. I added creamed corn to thicken it and the nutritional yeast to give it more depth and extra B-vitamins, but you could leave them out. The taco seasoning pack, spices in the ground crumbles and extra spices gave it plenty of flavor. Soup that satisfies my taco craving, I will happily make it again.


My pal Tina is hanging out with me in the Souper Sundays kitchen this week, let's take a look.

Tina of Squirrel Head Manor shared a tasty Tomato Rice Soup from her Soups & Stews Cookbook by Emily Brown saying, "This little cookbook has come in handy. Only 50 recipes but there was something in each category to interest me. The sections are divided by Creamy  Soups, Seafood Soups, Red Soups, Vegetable Soups, Meat Broth based Soups and Stews. ... The idea of mixing the rice and potatoes seemed weird but it turned out fine.  The fresh tomatoes were blitzed with my immersion blender. It's a good vegetarian soup."


At Kahakai Kitchen I shared a Tropical Fruit Salad with Lime-Honey Dressing & Toasted Coconut Chips that was inspired by a description of breakfast on the SS Lurline in my recent book tour review, The Lieutenant's Nurse by Sara Ackerman. (Don't forget to enter my Instagram giveaway for a copy of this great WWII historical novel.) The lime dressing added a tangy tropical punch to the salad, along with the crispy coconut chips.

 
Thanks to Tina for joining in this week!

About Souper Sundays:

Souper Sundays (going since 2008) now has a format of a picture link each week where anyone interested can post their soups, salads, or sandwiches at any time during the week and I post a recap of the entries the following week.

(If you aren't familiar with Souper Sundays, you can read about of the origins of it here.
 
If you would like to join in Souper (Soup, Salad, and Sammie) Sundays, I would love to have you! Here's how...
 

To join in this week's Souper Sunday's linkup with your soup, salad or sandwich:
  • Link up your soup (stew, chili, soupy curries, etc. are fine), salad, or sandwich dish, (preferably one from the current week or month--but we'll take older posts too) on the picture link below and leave a comment on this post so I am sure not to miss you. Also please see below for what to do on your blog post that you link up to Souper Sundays in order to be included in the weekly round-up.
and 

On your entry post (on your blog):
  • Mention Souper (Soup, Salad & Sammies) Sundays at Kahakai Kitchen and link back to this post. (Not to be a pain but it's polite and only fair to link back to events you link up at--so if you link a post up here without linking back to it on your post, it will be removed.)
  • You are welcome to add the Souper Sundays logo to your post and/or blog (completely optional).

You are invited to the Inlinkz link party!
Click here to enter  
Have a happy, healthy week!
 

Sunday, January 13, 2019

Pinto Bean Soup with Fresh Salsa (Simple Brothy Beans) for Souper (Soup, Salad, & Sammie) Sundays

My friend sent me a care package several weeks ago and included a small book of soups since she knows I cook them weekly and figured I'd use the cookbook more than she does. I flipped through it and tagged several recipes to make, and when a description of "soupy pinto beans" in the last book I read caught my eye, I knew I wanted to make the Pinto Bean Soup with Fresh Salsa.


Although the recipe included a recipe for fresh salsa (just tomatoes, red onion, cilantro and lime), tomatoes were not looking great in the grocery store I went too and the red onions were big and tough looking. Because of the lack of good ingredients (and because I am lazy sometimes) I bought a container of good fresh salsa from the deli case.


Pinto Bean Soup with Fresh Salsa
Slightly Adapted from The Little Guides: Soups
(Serves 6)

1 1/2 cups dried pinto beans
7 cups water
1/4 cup olive oil
2 yellow onions, diced
1 tsp salt (or to taste)
1/2 tsp ground black pepper
4 garlic cloves, minced
(I added abut 1/2 tsp Aleppo chili)
6 cups stock or broth of choice 
salsa and sour cream to serve

Sort through the beans and discard any misshapen beans or stones. Rinse well. Place the beans and water in a sauce pan. Bring to a boil, reduce the heat to medium-low, cover, and simmer until all the beans are cooked through and creamy inside, about 1 1/2 hours. Remove from the heat and set aside. 

In a large pot over medium heat, warm the oil. Add the onions, salt and pepper and saute until the onions are lightly browned, about 10 minutes. Add the garlic and saute for 1 to 2 minutes longer. Add the beans, their cooking liquid, and the stock. 

Bring to a boil, reduce the heat to medium, and simmer, stirring occasionally until the beans start to break apart, about 20 to 30 minutes. Remove the pan from the heat and let cool slightly.

In small batches, blend or process the bean mixture until smooth. Return the puree to the pan. Reheat over low heat, stirring often. 

Ladle the soup into warmed shallow bowls and top each serving with a spoonful of salsa and a dollop of sour cream.


Notes/Results:This one hit the spot--simple but good savory flavor. Wanting brothy beans, I just blended about a third of the beans and stirred them back into the soup. I also added some chili powder (Aleppo) for a bit of subtle heat and used low-sodium non-chicken bouillon paste in both  cooking the beans and in the soup itself which also added to the flavor. I used Tofutti Vegan Sour Cream but you could use yogurt or regular sour cream based on your preferences. One quick cooking note, I soaked my beans overnight from force of habit and so they only needed to be cooked for about an hour and then another 15 minutes or so with the onions. Hearty, satisfying and good, I'd happily make this soup again.


 Let's look into the Souper Sundays kitchen and see who is here:


Judee from Gluten Free A-Z Blog brought Instant Pot Red Lentil Vegetable Soup and said, "Red lentils make a hearty soup that can be cooked in the Instant Pot in just 10 minutes ( plus warm up time). Since red lentils do not require pre-soaking, it's a great last minute soup for a cold evening. ... It's a nice thick soup that warms for the inside out. If there are any leftovers, beware that the soup will become thicker overnight. Just add some additional vegetable broth before reheating!"

 
Tina of Squirrel Head Manor shared a healthy side dish she recently enjoyed, Zoe's Fruit Salad. and said, "When we dined there last week we both ordered kabobs and falafel.  I added the fruit salad because I knew it would be fresh fruit instead of the sort some restaurants give you, you know what I mean - crunchy under ripe cantaloupe?  Not this place.  Freshly cut orange segments and sweet cantaloupe, crisp green apple slices and sweet grapes. ... When we eat out, or grab takeaway, there are times I want to recreate the recipes or dishes at home. Sure, fruit salad isn't exactly rocket science but for some reason I don't bother at home. We buy the pre-cut, well we used to buy the pre-cut fruit salads from Publix but they were disappointing."

 
Thank you Judee & Tina for joining in this week! 
 
About Souper Sundays:

Souper Sundays (going since 2008) now has a format of a picture link each week where anyone interested can post their soups, salads, or sandwiches at any time during the week and I post a recap of the entries the following week.

(If you aren't familiar with Souper Sundays, you can read about of the origins of it here.
 
If you would like to join in Souper (Soup, Salad, and Sammie) Sundays, I would love to have you! Here's how...


To join in this week's Souper Sunday's linkup with your soup, salad or sandwich:
  • Link up your soup (stew, chili, soupy curries, etc. are fine), salad, or sandwich dish, (preferably one from the current week or month--but we'll take older posts too) on the picture link below and leave a comment on this post so I am sure not to miss you. Also please see below for what to do on your blog post that you link up her in order to be included in the weekly round-up.
and 

On your entry post (on your blog):
  • Mention Souper (Soup, Salad & Sammies) Sundays at Kahakai Kitchen and link back to this post. (Not to be a pain but it's polite and only fair to link back to events you link up at--so if you link a post up here without linking back to it on your post, it will be removed.)
  • You are welcome to add the Souper Sundays logo to your post and/or blog (optional).


Have a happy, healthy week!
 

Sunday, October 8, 2017

Mexican Hominy & Bean Tortilla Soup: A Variation on an Ina Garten Recipe for Souper (Soup, Salad & Sammie) Sundays

This week we started cooking with Ina Garten as the featured chef for the next six months at I Heart Cooking Clubs. I generally make a soup from our new featured chef to welcome them and also I figure that if a chef makes a great soup, we are going to get along just fine. The difference with Ina is that early in my blogging days, back in 2008 & 2009, I cooked a bunch of Ina's recipes with a group called the Barefoot Bloggers. So I made about 45 of her recipes from her books at that time, including the original Mexican Chicken Soup that I am adapting and welcoming her with today. 


Why the repeat?  Well the first reason is because I was craving tortilla soup and the second reason is that back in those days I ate meat and poultry, which I not longer do. I thought it would be fun to make a vegetarian version of it with hominy and pinto beans subbing in for the chicken--and since we are going on nine years ago that I first made and posted the soup, I think it's due for another go-round! (And if like me, in your early days of blogging you took really bad photos, it's always nice to have a second chance.)

The changes I made to the soup--omitting the chicken and adding in my substitutions are in red below. I also did not add corn tortillas to the soup--I know it is more traditional that way but I have tried it and don't love the thicker texture, preferring frying up thin strips and using them for topping instead. I did want an avocado for this soup but could not find a decent one at the grocery store and forgot the cilantro as well. Whoops! I compensated with some chopped parsley for a touch of color.


Mexican Hominy & Bean Tortilla Soup
Adapted from Barefoot Contessa at Home by Ina Garten
(Serves 6 to 8)

4 split (2 whole) chicken breasts, bone in, skin on (I omitted) 
good olive oil
kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
2 cups chopped onions (2 onions)
1 cup chopped celery (2 stalks)
2 cups chopped carrots (4 carrots)
4 large cloves garlic, chopped
2 1/2 quarts chicken stock, preferably homemade (I used homemade garlic broth)
1 (28-ounce) can whole tomatoes in puree, crushed (I chopped mine a bit but left some big pieces)
2 to 4 jalapeno peppers, seeded and minced (I used 2 large)

(I added one (    ) can white hominy, rinsed well and drained)
(I added i (15 oz) can pinto beans)
1 tsp ground cumin
1 tsp ground coriander seed
1/4 to 1/2 cup chopped fresh cilantro leaves, optional (I forgot to buy and left out, adding 1 Tbsp dried oregano instead)
6 (6-inch) fresh white corn tortillas (see notes below)
 

For serving: sliced avocado, sour cream, grated Cheddar cheese, and tortilla chips. (I used fried tortilla strips, chopped flat leaf parsley and feta cheese)
 

For Chicken if using: Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F.
Place the chicken breasts skin side up on a sheet pan. Rub with olive oil, sprinkle with salt and pepper, and roast for 35 to 40 minutes, until done. When the chicken is cool enough to handle, discard the skin and bones, and shred the meat. Cover and set aside. 


Meanwhile, heat 3 2 tablespoons of olive oil in a large pot or Dutch oven. Add the onions, celery, and carrots and cook over medium-low heat for 10 minutes, or until the onions start to brown. Add the garlic and cook for 30 seconds. 

Add the stock, tomatoes with their puree, jalapenos, cumin, coriander, 1 tablespoon salt (depending on the saltiness of the chicken stock), 1 teaspoon pepper, and the cilantro, if using. (I added the hominy and pinto beans and some dried oregano here.) Cut the tortillas in 1/2, then cut them crosswise into 1/2-inch strips and add to the soup. (I left the tortilla strips out and instead fried them up for topping.)

Bring the soup to a boil, then lower the heat and simmer for 25 minutes. Add the shredded chicken and season to taste. 

Serve the soup hot topped with your favorite toppings.


Notes/Results: This is a great soup, just as tasty as the chicken version and it totally solved my tortilla soup craving. It has a nice heat (I used 2 large jalapenos) so the spice was there without being overpowering. The hominy (I actually added to my 2008 version too) adds such a great chewiness--along with the beans it makes the soup satisfying and I think you wouldn't miss the chicken meat (but maybe that's just me!) ;-) You could leave off the cheese or pick a vegan cheese for a vegan version. I would happily make this soup again.


This week at IHCC we are saying "Hi Ina!" so I am linking up this soup post there. You can see what the other participants made to welcome Ina by checking out the picture links on the post.


We have some fantastic dishes waiting this week in the Souper Sundays kitchen--let's have a look!

Debra of Eliot's Eats shared her unusual Pineapple-Smoked Baloney Sandwich, inspired by the 2016 Ghostbusters for Food 'n Flix saying, "...I could not get Patty’s comment about the aroma of the subway out of my mind: “It smells like burnt baloney and regrets down here.” I just kept laughing. I had to do something with baloney. We didn’t burn our baloney, but we did smoke it. ... We grilled the pineapple slices and made some pretty delicious sandwiches."



A warm welcome to Linda from The Crafty Gardner who joins us at Souper Sundays for the first time this week and shared Parsnip and Apple Soup, Linda said, "Parsnips aren’t everyone’s choice for a vegetable, but you have to be open minded and give them a try. Maybe it is an acquired taste.  Maybe it’s a British taste. ... It was delicious with some flax and quinoa bread and some chunks of cheese."



Shaheen of Allotment2Kitchen is here with Peri Peri Roasted Cauliflower and Chickpea Couscous Salad and says it "is studded with nutty chickpeas and garnished with baby kale that tasted more like rocket than kale.  Its not much of a recipe, I coated the cauliflower in a little olive oil and doused it with Peri Peri spice blend and then put it in the oven to roast. You can make your own Peri Peri Spice Mix or buy it.  The couscous was made according to the packet instructions and then combined together along with a tin of cooked chickpeas."



Finally here at Kahakai Kitchen, I took the apple jam I made last week and succumbed to putting it into a grilled cheese sandwich with American cheese (for the melty factor) and Muenster. It was so delicious. I have had this yummy Grilled Cheese and Apple Jam Sandwich twice more since posting it and I am going to need to make more of the Caramel-Apple Jam so I can have it again. 


Mahalo to everyone who joined me at Souper Sundays this week! 

Souper Sundays is back with a new format of a picture link each week where anyone interested can post their soups, salads, or sandwiches any time during the week and I post a recap of the entries the following week.)

(If you aren't familiar with Souper Sundays, you can read about of the origins of it here.
 

If you would like to join in Souper (Soup, Salad, and Sammie) Sundays, I would love to have you! Here's how...

To join in this week's linkup with your soup, salad or sandwich:

  • Link up your soup (stew, chili, soupy curries, etc. are fine), salad, or sandwich dish, (preferably one from the current week or month--but we'll take older posts too) on the picture link below and leave a comment on this post so I am sure not to miss you.
and 

On your entry post (on your blog):
  • Please mention Souper (Soup, Salad & Sammies) Sundays at Kahakai Kitchen and link back to this post.
  • You are welcome to add the Souper Sundays logo to your post and/or blog (optional).



Have a happy, healthy week!
 

Thursday, September 29, 2016

Shrimp Tacos, Black Bean, Radish & Cheese Salad, and Red Hibiscus-Vanilla-Lime Agua Fresca for the Food 'N Flix and Cook the Books: Frida Kahlo Crossover Event

The best laid plans... I planned to be timely and do two separate posts for this month's Food 'N Flix and Cook the Books Crossover Event, but that just did not happen in a month where I swear I blinked and it was over. So the end of the month has me scrambling (as usual) and posting two dishes inspired by Frida Kahalo and from the Frida's Fiestas cookbook accompanied by a glass of simple Jamaica (Red Hibiscus) Vanilla-Lime Agua Fresca.


The wonderful Debra of Eliot's Eats is hosting both the Food and Flix movie pick of Frida (see her announcement post here) and the Cook the Books pick of The Secret Book of Frida Kahlo (see the announcement post here). 


I first saw Frida with friends when it came out in 2002, after a dinner of Indian food. (Unfortunately there were no decent Mexican restaurants nearby the old Indie theater, so what can you do? It worked much better thematically when we saw Monsoon Wedding!) Because of this movie, I will forever picture artist Frida Kahlo as Salma Hayek and Alfred Molina as her husband artist Diego Rivera no matter how many pictures I see of the real people. I remembered all the color (I love the way the paintings 'dissolve' into the movie scenes) and the basic story, but this time I got it from Netflix and watched it for the food. We don't see a lot of specific dishes in the film beyond Diego's favorite mole dish and some mentions of sopa Azteca and pozole, but there is plenty of food and drink (mostly tequila of course) pictured throughout, including lots of tropical fruits and veggies, Chinese food, a diner breakfast of cinnamon buns, eggs and bacon, a wedding feast, and corn being shucked. 


The Secret Book of Frida Kahlo on the other hand, is as much or more about the food as it is the story of Frida's life, told from the notebooks and sketchbooks supposedly found in Frida's home Casa Azul in Mexico City. The author, F. G. Haghenbeck, writes the novel as a special notebook; “El Libro de Hierba Santa” (“The Sacred Herbs Book”) where Frida's story is shared through her memories and recipes. Frida Kahlo led a very colorful life in more ways than one and the book is at times sad, at times humorous, at times a bit magical. It really does make a nice companion to the movie--providing more detail to parts and spinning out on its own for others. At times I didn't love the way it was written (and maybe that was due in part to the translation and word choice?), but overall it was easy to get swept up in the story. The recipes and food descriptions were my favorite part of the book and I will probably go back and make some of the recipes like the pico de gallo (if I ever find nopales), the pumpkin tamales, and the Mango Tepozteco Ice Cream which intrigued me with the addition of the sour cream and egg white.


I chose not to cook from the book for this round because a couple of month's ago I stumbled across a copy of Frida's Fiestas: Recipes and Reminiscences of Life with Frida Kahlo by Diego Rivera's daughter Guadalupe Rivera and journalist Marie-Pierre Colle for $5.00 at the thrift store. It is a gorgeous book with illustrations from Frida's work and photographs by Ignacio Urquiza.


I wanted something simple, meat-free and relatively healthy so I went with a dinner of Shrimp Tacos, accompanied by Bean, Radish and Cheese Salad. To drink, I made a simple Jamaica (Red Hibiscus) Vanilla-Lime Agua Fresca.
 

Shrimp Tacos
Adapted from Frida's Fiestas
(Serves 8)

1 medium onion, chopped
4 serrano chiles, chopped (or to taste--I used half & de-seeded them)
4 Tbsp butter
3 medium tomatoes, peeled, seeded and chopped
salt and pepper to taste
1 lb cooked shrimp (I used large shrimp)
24 small-medium corn tortillas
(I added fresh lines to squeeze on when eating)

Saute the onion and chiles in butter until the onion is translucent. Add the tomatoes and cook until the tomatoes are thoroughly cooked (about 10 minutes). If the sauce is too thick, thin it with a bit of broth or water.

Add the shrimp and cook until they are just warmed through--about 2 minutes. 

Grill or warm the tortillas and fill with the shrimp mixture. Serve piping hot. Or serve the shrimp mixture with the tortillas on the side.

-----

Bean, Radish and Chese Salad
Adapted from Frida's Fiestas
(Serves 8)

5 cups cooked black beans, drained
10 radishes, cut in quarters (I thinly sliced mine)
3/4 lb panela cheese (or Munster) cut in cubes (I used Cotija cheese)
1/2 cup chopped cilantro

Dressing:
2/3 cup olive oil
1/3 cup red wine vinegar
2 tsp chopped cilantro
salt to taste

For salad: Mix the beans, radishes, cheese and cilantro in a large salad bowl and toss with the dressing.

For the dressing: Whisk all the ingredients together, seasoning to taste.


Jamaica (Red Hibiscus) Vanilla-Lime Agua Fresca
by Deb, Kahakai Kitchen, Adapted/Inspired by The Vanilla Chef
(Makes 2 Quarts)

1 quart water
2/3 cup (about 1 ounce) dried hibiscus flowers
1 vanilla bean, sliced lengthwise
3/4 cup agave or honey, or to taste 
1/3 cup lime juice, or to taste
1 quart very cold water
lime slices

Bring a quart of water to a boil in a large saucepan. Add the hibiscus flowers and the vanilla bean to the boiling water. Remove the pan from the stove and allow it to steep for at least 20 minutes. Strain the mixture into a large glass pitcher. (You can save the vanilla bean for another use if you like). Add the agave or honey and stir well to dissolve. Add the cold water and lime juice and adjust sweetening as needed. Chill and serve over ice with slices of lime to garnish.


Notes/Results: This turned out to be quite the tasty meal! simple ingredients but really fresh and good flavors. I made half-ish quantities of the taco and salad recipes and the minor adjustments I made worked for me. First I used half the serrano chiles and I removed the stem, seeds, and membranes before chopping. I like a bit of spice but I find serranos are usually pretty spicy. These tacos had a definite kick still, so I know if I had doubled them as the recipe was written the tacos would have been too spicy for my tastes. I also think the squeeze of lime was perfect with the buttery shrimp and tomato. For the bean salad, I used my mandoline to thinly slice the radishes instead of quartering them. I am not big on chunks of radish, but I do like thin slices. Cotija cheese, a bit more crumbly than panela is readily available at my local grocery store and it was easier than driving into the Latin market to buy some panela. With the tacos, beans salad and the sweet and tart agua fresca, it was a perfect light dinner that was pretty quick to make. I would definitely make all three recipes again. 


The Secret Book of Frida Kahlo is my thirteenth foodie book entry for the Foodies Read 2016 event. You can check out the September Foodies Read linkup, hosted by Heather at Based on a True Story, to see what everyone is reading this month. 



I'm linking this salad up to this week's Souper Sundays post here at Kahakai Kitchen. If you aren't familiar, Souper Sundays is my weekly soup tribute that includes sandwiches, and salads and is open to anyone and everyone who wants to share a soup, salad, or sandwich post that week. You can see the details for joining in on the current weekly post or here--we would love to have you!


Submissions for both Food 'N Flix and Cook the Books are due tomorrow, September 30th. Debra will be rounding entries up on her blog for Food 'N Flix and on the Cook the Book's site respectively. If you missed out and like food, books, and foodie books, join us at Cook the Books where our Oct/Nov pick is Tomorrow There Will Be Apricots by Jessica Soffer, hosted by Simona of briciole, and if you are a fan of food, movies, and making food inspired by movies, I will be hosting October's Food 'N Flix fun film: Beetlejuice, here at Kahakai Kitchen


 

Sunday, July 31, 2016

Spicy Black Bean Soup with Cashew Crème Fraîche and Cilantro for Souper (Soup, Salad & Sammie) Sundays

I think that a good simple black bean soup works any time of year--no matter the season. Light but satisfying, spicy and tangy--it totally works as a summer soup. Even better if you add an extra topping or two--like fresh summer corn, red bell pepper, and avocado, along with cilantro and crème fraîche (or in this case, cashew crème fraîche). It's grey and drizzly here today, although it's still 80 degrees F., and this soup brightens the day right up, like a fiesta in your mouth.
 

I made some changes to Curtis's recipe--mainly doubling the black beans so I had plenty to blend and to keep whole in the soup--which I prefer to having it all pureed. I also upped some of the spices to compensate for the extra beans and used veggie stock. To add more of the cilantro flavor, I put some leaves and stems in with the soup in my blender and finally, I used cashew cream (with a pinch of salt and lemon juice added) in place of the crème fraîche. My changes are noted in red below. 


Spicy Black Bean Soup with Cashew Creme Crème Fraîche and Cilantro
Slightly Adapted from Curtis Stone.com
(Serves 4)

1 Tbsp olive oil
1 shallot, coarsely chopped (I used 1/2 small sweet onion)
1 garlic clove, coarsely chopped (I used 2)
1 red jalapeño chile, seeded, chopped
1/2 tsp ground cumin (I used 1 tsp)
2 cups cooked black beans (I used 4 cups black beans)
2 cups chicken stock (I used veggie stock)
(I added 1/3 cup cilantro leaves and stems coarsely chopped)
Salt and freshly ground black pepper
Juice of 1 lime
1/4 cup crème fraîche (I used cashew creme)
1/2 small red bell pepper, seeded, finely diced
2 Tbsp chopped cilantro
(I added fresh corn kernels and chopped avocado)

Heat a large pot over medium-high heat. Add the oil and shallot and sauté for 1 minute, or until tender. Add the garlic, jalapeño, and cumin and sauté for 1 minute, or until the garlic softens. Add the beans and chicken stock and bring to the simmer. Simmer for 5 minutes to blend the flavors.

(Deb's Note: I pulled out 2 full cups (about half) of the beans and set them aside, them blended the rest of the mixture in the blender, adding in the 1/3 cup of cilantro stems and leaves before blender. Then I added the blended mixture back to the pot with the reserved beans and seasoned to taste as directed.)  In a blender, working in batches, puree the soup until smooth. Transfer the pureed soup to a medium saucepan and bring to a simmer over medium heat. Season the soup to taste with salt, pepper, and lime juice. 

Ladle the soup into serving bowls, drizzle some crème fraîche over the soup, garnish with the red bell pepper and cilantro (and avocado and fresh corn as desired), and serve.


Notes/Results:  I liked the flavors in this soup and I think adding some of the cilantro to the broth gives the flavor more depth. I am not sure it quite deserves the 'spicy' moniker when you de-seed the pepper, so if you like it spicy have some cayenne pepper or hot sauce ready to add. The toppings are what make this soup special, so add what you like or have on hand. Crushed tortilla chips and fresh tomatoes would be nice as well. The crème fraîche (cashew cream if you want it vegan) is nice stirred into the soup, making it nice and creamy. Reasonably quick to make, healthy, and tastes great--I would make it again.


I'll be linking this soup up I Heart Cooking Clubs where this coming week's theme is Herbalicious. You can see what herbs people chose to cook with by clicking on the picture links on the post.  

Souper Sundays is back with a new format of a picture link each week where anyone interested can post their soups, salads, or sandwiches any time during the week and I post a recap of the entries the following week.)

(If you aren't familiar with Souper Sundays, you can read about of the origins of it here.



Tina of Squirrel Head Manor shares two salads that she enjoyed last week saying, "Can you believe it - next Monday will be August. A step closer to my favorite months and jackets and boots and fires in the yard. But until such a time arrives... we have cool lunches for hot days. ... A Greek Salad where I ditched the pepperoncinis but loved the extra black olives. This was enjoyed with a few slices of pizza while we had movie night.

 
And "Here we have a Salad Nicoise purchased from Hopkins Eatery in Tallahassee. Instead of fresh tuna, as I use at home, they added a scoop of tuna salad. It was very good and a cold salad loaded with lots of veggies and a bit of protein hits the spot. You can't see the potato slices very well but it had plenty of seasoned red potato slices."


 
Debra of Eliot's Eats made this pretty movie-inspired Spinach Salad with Sweet Peas, Strawberries, and Maple-Balsamic Vinaigrette for Food 'n Flix and said, "I decided to obviously change up the recipe and use spinach in honor of Popeye. Luckily, the salad did contain frozen peas (for Swee’pea) and olive oil (obviously for Popeye’s love). And, I will reply “Yes” to the Commodore:  I am making a salad!"



Judee of Gluten Free A-Z Blog brings a Quick Quinoa Salad and says, "Leftovers can be recreated! I used three leftovers to create a quick and tasty quinoa salad. Tossed salad, leftover cooked quinoa, and homemade lemon dressing taste great together. Sometimes you discover something by accident that turns out to really work well!" 



Flour.ish.en Test Kitchen shared this Ottolenghi-adapted Sweet Summer Salad, saying, "I could not stop eating this salad. I substituted goat cheese for gorgonzola, so that the fruity sunny flavor of nectarines, as well as the greens, would shine. Used two kinds of green: arugula and endive. The lightly roasted chopped almonds in butter are a welcoming play in texture. This salad is so refreshing and tantalizing; I'm thinking of making another one in short order."

  

Vicki of I'd Rather Be At the Beach shared a Popeye-inspired Burger Soup and said, "This was a good soup. The ingredients didn’t cost much to buy, and it was easy and quick to make. The next time I make it I’m going to use a few each of Yukon potatoes, carrots, and a small bag of frozen peas, and maybe celery, instead of using a bag of mixed vegetables. It was good, but I like to try different ingredients to see which way tastes the best."

 
Thanks to everyone who linked up last week!

If you would like to join in Souper (Soup, Salad, and Sammie) Sundays, I would love to have you! Here's how...

To join in this week's linkup with your soup, salad or sandwich:


  • Link up your soup (stew, chili, soupy curries, etc. are fine), salad, or sandwich dish, (preferably one from the current week or month--but we'll take older posts too) on the picture link below and leave a comment on this post so I am sure not to miss you.
On your entry post (on your blog):
  • please mention Souper (Soup, Salad & Sammies) Sundays at Kahakai Kitchen and link back to this post.
  • you are welcome to add the wonderful Souper Sundays logo (created by Ivy at Kopiaste) to your post and/or blog (optional).




Have a happy, healthy week!