This soup is quick and easy to make and full of fresh, healthy ingredients. In this recipe, Chef Kate McAloon has used canned beans, but if you have the time to make fresh ones they are great, too! Chef Kate often makes a double batch and freezes some to have on hand when friends drop by. Serve it with a mixed green salad, some fresh salsa, guacamole, and a little sour cream or yogurt for a delicious, nutritious meal. Always use organic ingredients whenever possible.

Black Bean Soup with Toasted Cumin Seeds

Ingredients

2 Cups refried black beans

2 Cups cooked black beans (drained and rinsed)

¼ Cup carrot (finely chopped)

¼ Cup onion (finely chopped)

½ Cup red and yellow bell pepper (finely chopped)

1 to 2 Leaves chard stems included (ends trimmed and finely chopped)

2 to 3 Cloves garlic (minced)

¼ Cup cilantro (coarsely chopped) (reserve a little for garnish)

¼ Cup parsley (coarsely chopped)

1 ½ Teaspoon *toasted cumin seeds

1 Teaspoon cumin powder

¼ Smoked ground chipotle pepper or mild chili powder (to taste)

Toasted pumpkin seeds (for garnish)

2 ½ to 3 Cups water or stock (you may need a little more during cooking)

Preparation

Sauté veggies, herbs, and spices over medium heat then add the water or stock. Bring to a boil and reduce heat. Then add the refried beans and whole beans. Stir well to combine and reduce heat to medium low. Continue to simmer stirring occasionally for about 10 to 15 minutes. The soup is ready to serve, or you can chill and refrigerate up to 4 days; just reheat on medium heat. When ready to serve, garnish with fresh salsa, sour cream or yogurt, toasted pumpkin seeds, and cilantro leaves.

*To Toast Cumin Seeds

Heat a sauté or frying pan on medium high heat. Add cumin seeds and cook while stirring for about 2 to 3 minutes until you can smell a toasted aroma. Be careful not to burn them! Remove from heat and cool. You can toast extra and they will keep in a covered container for a couple of weeks.

Until next time “Savor Every Morsel of Life” xxx Chef Kate

Visit www.chefkatealiveandcooking.com.

Image By: Peter Turner