Sunday, January 31, 2016

Black Bean and Hot Link Soup


Today we took our usual Saturday long walk, but it was SO cold out we needed to warm up when we came home.  Since I still had a lot of hot links in the freezer due to the last Costco run, I decided to make a black bean and hot link soup.  This one is hearty, spicy, somewhat healthy and will warm you up.  
This soup started from a very spicy vegetable stock that I made last week (don't worry you can use canned stock).  Often times I will simmer lots of veggies trimmings and make stock, this day I added the cores of the jalapenos... so essentially the seeds.  After about 10 minutes of simmering, I tasted the stock and almost blew the top of my head off!  Immediately, I fished the two jalapeno "cores" out of the stock, hoping it would not get any hotter.  I was left with stock that I couldn't use for my mushroom soup, so I put it in the fridge to consider what to make. It was perfect for this one, so I didn't add the jalapeno that I included below.

You could serve this with a little creme fraiche (or sour cream) and some cornbread on the side!  I have two favorite cornbread recipes, Sweet & Spicy Cornbread or Good Ole Basic Cornbread. I love to make a batch of soup on the weekends and save some for the week's lunches.

This soup was finished in just about 35 minutes, but would be good to do in a crockpot and simmer on low for the day.

Makes about 8-10 cups

1 cup onions, diced small
1 cup celery, diced small
1/2 cup carrots, diced or sliced thinly
2 garlic cloves, minced
1 jalapeno, minced (optional) 
1-2 Tbsp olive oil
3 cans black beans, drained (2 are shown, but I did use 3)
1 can diced tomatoes, undrained
2 hot links, sliced and diced
1 tsp cumin
1 tsp chili powder
4 cups beef, or vegetable stock 
Salt & Pepper, as needed 

Saute the onions, celery, carrots and garlic in the olive oil for about 3-4 minutes over medium high heat.  Add the black beans, tomatoes, spices, hot link and beef stock.  Simmer over medium heat for 25-30 minutes.  If you want some thickness to the soup, smash some of the beans with a tomato masher.

Serve and enjoy!

Here it is just before I added the stock and let it simmer for about 30 minutes.

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