If you’ve indulged in last week’s recipe, you probably have a few leftover ingredients in need to be used. I think one of the tricks to an efficient solo kitchen is knowing how to use these before they go bad. Not only does leftovers help cut your cooking time but using them minimise wastage and saves you money – win, win and win.
Being in this exact situation myself I was browsing the many food blogs I follow in search of inspiration to cook my half can of black beans in a quick and easy way. I’m a regular reader of Love and Lemons. Her style is quite different than mine and concentrates mostly on vegetables, which inspires me a lot. You should check her site, it’s absolutely gorgeous, with food so colourful it’s a pleasure to watch and read.
So the other day while browsing her site I stumble upon a lovely black bean soup – exactly what I needed. I was quick to the kitchen and made the recipe in no time. I was so impressed with the ease and swiftness this meal comes together I want to share it with you – it totally fits the solo cook lifestyle.
I’ve adapted the recipe to suit the quantities of bean that were left from my previous cooking session and I served the soup alongside mashed avocado on toast. It’s hot, warming and filling, ideal for those cold and grey nights we’ve been having.
This recipe is based on the Love and lemons spicy black bean soup: http://www.loveandlemons.com/2014/01/27/spicy-black-bean-soup/
- a splash Olive oil
- 1 Shallot
- 1 fat Garlic clove
- 1/4 Jalapeño
- 1/2 tbsp Coriander (cilantro) stems (reserve the leaves for the tartine)
- 1 tsp mild Chili powder
- 350 ml Chicken stock
- 1/2 can Black beans, drained and rinsed (keep a few aside to top the soup)
- the juice of 1/4 Lime
- 1 or 2 tbsp Yoghurt
- 1 slice Bread
- 1/2 Avocado
- 1/2 lime
- Coarse salt
- Coriander (cilantro)
- Finely chop the shallot, garlic and jalapeño.
- Put a saucepan over medium heat with a splash of olive oil and fry the chopped preparation for 3-5 minutes until soft.
- Add the chili powder and fry for an extra minute.
- Pour the stock and the beans in the pan. Give it a good stir and bring to the boil.
- Add the beans and simmer on a low heat for 10 minutes to allow the beans to soften and the flavours to combine.
- Turn the heat off and blend the soup with a hand blender. Add the lime juice and check the seasoning. If the soup is too thick, add a few splashes of water until you reach the desired consistency.
- Return the saucepan to a low heat while you prepare the tartine.
- Scoop out the flesh of the avocado and mash it with a fork. Smear the spread on a thick slice of bread, sprinkle some sea salt and scatter the coriander on top. Finish with a good squeeze of lime juice – I like mine quite zingy.
- Serve the soup with a good dollop of yoghurt and for some extra texture top with a few rings of shallots, thin slices of jalapeño and a small handful of black beans.
- If you are using a stock cube you can make your life a lot easier simply by throwing half if it with 350ml water directly in the pan. The cube will melt with the water comes to the boil, saving you from an unnecessary step.
- If you can handle a lot of spice, and love your food screaming hot, use a hot chili powder. You can also adjust the spiciness by adding more or less jalapeños at the start or the end of the recipe.
- Simply switch the chicken stock for a vegetable stock and you’ve got yourself a vegetarian meal.
- Always have some chilis on hand by freeze the leftover jalapeños. You can chop them straight from the freezer to use in soups, chilli or stews.