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Tuesday, October 21, 2014

Caribbean Black Bean and Vegetable Stew

For day 21 of Soup Month 2014 we made a hearty Caribbean Black Bean and Vegetable Stew that is packed with healthy ingredients.  Peppers, onions, tomatoes, carrots and just a bit of Serrano chilies come together to create this healthy, light soup.

Beans are very easy to cook and this recipe allows you to adjust the level of spice to suit your own preference.  If you like your soup a bit more spicy, just add an extra Serrano chili or maybe a little more cumin or hot sauce.  For a more mild soup you can even choose to leave the chilies out.  For a thinner soup you can add a little more broth or for a thicker, more hearty soup, just increase some of the vegetables to your liking.  This recipe is very forgiving so it's a soup you can get creative with and it will always turn out delicious.

As funny as it sounds, I think this would be a great soup to serve for a Halloween party!  With such a deep, dark color and bits of red and green color, it just seems to be a slightly "ghoulish" soup that Halloween guests would love.  And the kids loved it!  This soup would also hold up well in a crock pot so it would be easy to serve during an evening party.  Enjoy!!

1-1/3 cups  Black Beans, soaked overnight in cold water (or use 2 15-oz cans of black beans, drained)
7 cups  Vegetable Stock
1/2 cup  LandShark Beer
1/4 cup  Dark Kraken Rum
1 TB  Minced Garlic
1 medium  Yellow Onion, diced
2 TB  Vegetable Oil
1 stalk  Celery, chopped
1  Green Bell Pepper, seeded and diced
1  Red Bell Pepper, seeded and diced
1  Serrano Chili, seeded and minced
2  Carrots,  peeled and diced
1/2 cup  Crushed Tomatoes
2 tsp  Cumin
2 tsp  Chili Powder
1 tsp  Frank's Hot Sauce
1/2 tsp  Ground Black Pepper
1/2 tsp  Salt
1/2 tsp  Cayenne Pepper
Sour Cream and Chopped Green Onions for Garnish (optional)

Drain the beans.  Place the beans in a large soup pot and add the stock, beer, rum, garlic and half of the onions.  Simmer over medium-low heat, uncovered, for 90 minutes, stirring occasionally.  If the liquid begins to evaporate during his time, add 1 cup of water and continue to simmer.

Heat the oil in a medium saucepan.  Saute the remaining onions, celery, peppers and carrots over medium heat until the veggies are tender, about 6 minutes.  Set the mixture aside.

When the beans are soft, puree half of the bean mixture using an immersion blender or a stand blender.  Return the puree to the pot and stir in the cooked veggies, crushed tomatoes, and the seasonings.  Bring the soup to a simmer over medium heat and cook 20 minutes, stirring occasionally.  Again, add more water, or a bit more rum if the soup is too thick, or continue to simmer a bit longer if the soup is too thin.

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