Tuesday, January 28, 2014

A Note on Black Bean Soup

First of all let me be the first to wish January a swift exit without the door hitting its ass on the way out.
Next, I hope those sweet potatoes from Harmony Valley and Crossroads Community Farm cabbage slaw pair nicely for you with that black bean soup. The best BB soup I’ve ever had was the first bowl I ever had. I have been trying ever since to replicate it. I have consistently failed. The soup is something of an Achilles Heel for me, I think.  My guess is that I am trying too hard.
A nondescript Cuban restaurant in Miami served me that archetypical bowl 28 years ago. Likely the soup was little more than some beans and their broth quickly stirred into a pan with some sautéed garlic. The fresh, almost raw garlic flavor was key. The only real seasoning in the beans was likely salt, although bay and allspice (they call it pepper) could have been there too. Another key component is the minced, raw onion garnish which is a sweet and sharp, crunchy, wet contrast to the thick, rich soup. It is imperative you it to be added at the last minute at home for the authentic taste and texture experience.  If I had added it here, the onion would have only lent the soup a stale, sour onion flavor by the time it got to you.  You can also add a little sour cream if you like.

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