Chimichurri Black Bean Soup

 

Chimichurri and Black Bean Soup
Chimichurri and Black Bean Soup

I love food processors. It makes throwing together delicious meals super easy. I created this chimichuri black bean recipe out of my love of fresh ingredients and easy preparations. Once the chimicurri is prepared, it only take 10 minutes to put this soup together and 30 to let it cook though you’d never know it from the flavor it packs.

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Three Bean Pumpkin Quinoa Chili

Three Bean Pumpkin Quinoa Chili
Three Bean Pumpkin Quinoa Chili

It’s winter, which means it’s cold, everyone is sick and it’s time for some hearty chili. It’s really hard to screw up chili, you just need to throw a bunch of ingredients in a big pot, put some spice on it and let it cook for a bit and ta da! Chili. I’ve been making chili for so many eons that I rarely experiment with variations but today I felt inspired! I wanted something super robust and chock-full of nutrition so I incorporated pumpkin and quinoa into my basic recipe. The results are mouth-watering. Enjoy!

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Chick Pea Rice Soup

Every once in a great while you find yourself with leftover rice in the fridge but no craving for a stir-fry. What is one to do?! Why create a soup, of course! Most of my recipes are born out of random ingredients laying around in my fridge, like half a can of tomato paste, a handful of fresh herbs, a glass of wine (the sin!) or in this case, leftover cooked rice. I looked around and saw the leftover rice, some cooked chick peas, a small can of tomato sauce and the squeaky wheels started turning in my head. I happened to be in Puerto Rico at the time and had access to my favorite herb on the planet, culantro (known as recao in Puerto Rico and ngò gai in Vietnam). Though different than its Puerto Rican incarnation, culantro is more fragrant that cilantro, with a pungent aroma and taste. I was able to locate some at a Vietnamese market in Portland labeled as “ngò gai” and “Vietnamese parsley”. I assure you the search is worth it. You can substitute cilantro in this recipe if culantro is not available.

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Chick Peas and Green Peas Pasta

Once upon a time when I was in college I was stuck at my temp job with no food, no money and a killer hangover. I begged my boyfriend at the time to bring me some food and less than half an hour later he showed with this chick peas and peas pasta dish. I swear he saved my life that day plus this creation started my love affair with chick peas. I’ve been making this dish for over a decade now and it has gone through several changes since the original (olive oil, garlic, onions, chick peas, peas, s & p) was presented to me. It really is one of the easiest and tastiest things you can throw together when in a hurry especially since most of the ingredients are simple staples. This recipe lends itself well to a variety of flavors so feel free to experiment with other vegetables tossed in.

Chick Peas and Green Peas Pasta

1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
1/4 cup Earth Balance
1 medium onion, diced
6 cloves of garlic, minced
2 cups of cooked chick peas
1 cup frozen green peas
1 3/4 cups of rice milk
1 cup shredded vegan cheese (optional)
2 tbsp nutritional yeast
1 tbsp salt
1 tbsp fresh pepper
8-10 ounces cooked pasta, preferably shells or penne

1. Warm olive oil and Earth Balance in a large saute pan over medium high heat and add onions with a dash of salt. Cook until clear and fragrant. Add garlic and stir to mix well.
2.  Add chick peas, peas, and rice milk. Simmer over medium heat for 10 minutes.
3. Add shredded vegan cheese (if using) and the rest of the ingredients except the pasta. Cook for an additional ten minutes or until all the flavors are combined and sauce is creamy. Toss in pasta and serve with fresh ground black pepper.

Preparation Time: 10 minutes
Cooking Time: 30 minutes
Servings: 4 bowls

 

 

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Southern Style Black Eyed Peas

Oh how I love a plate of black eyed peas, brown rice, roasted brussel sprouts and bbq tofu. It is such a comforting combination of flavors and makes me oh so very happy. This is one of my favorite dishes to order at The Bye and Bye in Portland so I decided to create my own version. The picture below has grilled yams instead of tofu, which was a lovely complement to the meal.



Southern Style Black Eyed Peas

2 1/2 cups dried black eyed peas, soaked at least 4 hours
2 tbsp olive oil
1 large onion, diced
3 garlic cloves, minced
1 celery stalk, diced
1 jalapeño, seeded and diced
1/2 small can tomato paste
1 tsp brown sugar
1/2 tsp liquid smoke
1 bay leaf
4 cups of water or vegetable stock
1/8 tsp cayenne
1/2 tsp thyme
salt & pepper

1. Saute onions, garlic and celery over medium heat in oil.
2. Add jalapeño and continue stirring until vegetables are soft and fragrant.
3. Add a splash of water to deglaze then add the rest of the ingredients except thyme, salt and pepper.
4. Bring contents to a light boil, reduce heat and simmer partially covered for at least one hour, stirring occasionally.
5. Once most of the liquid is absorbed the beans are ready. Season with thyme, salt and pepper, serve over brown rice and enjoy!

Preparation Time: 15 minutes
Cooking Time: 1 1/2 hours
Servings: 4-6

 

 

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Moroccan Chick Pea and Lentil Soup

Chick Peas and lentils are easily two of my favorite legumes. I love their versatility in soups, pasta dishes, over rice, pureed for dips and in salads plus they lend themselves well to a variety of herbs and spices. Putting these two magical legumes together in a single dish may be the best idea I’ve had all year. The aromatic spices and tomato base of this soup are a perfect stage for these complementary beans to shine together. This rich dish could easily be served over rice though I found it to be ample and satisfying by itself.

Moroccan Chick Pea and Lentil Soup

3 tbsp olive oil
1 medium onion, diced
1 celery rib, diced
1 jalapeño, seeded and minced
1 1/2 inch piece of fresh ginger, grated
Pinch of saffron thread
1/2 tsp ground cinnamon
2 tsp turmeric
1 tbsp cumin
2 cups crushed tomatoes
1 tbsp tomato paste
2 cinnamon sticks
2 bay leaf
1/2 tsp sugar
1 cup lentils, sorted and rinsed
8 cups of water or vegetable broth
2 cups of chick peas, cooked
1 garlic clove, minced
Sea salt and fresh ground pepper
Lemon wedges (optional)

1) In a large soup pot warm olive oil over medium high heat. Add onions and celery and sauté until halfway cooked. Add ginger, jalapeño, saffron, turmeric, cumin and ground cinnamon and sauté until onions are translucent and aromatic.
2) Add tomatoes and tomato paste and let simmer for a few minutes. Add cinnamon sticks, bay leaves and sugar.
3) Add lentils, water or vegetable broth and bring to a light boil.
4) Reduce heat and partially cover. Cook until lentils are al dente, about 30-40 minutes.
5) Add chick peas and garlic clove and simmer until all flavors are developed, about 30 more minutes.
6) Remove cinnamon sticks and bay leaves. Add a generous amount of fresh pepper and adjust salt according to personal taste.
7) Serve with a squeeze of lemon.

Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cooking Time: 1 hour and 30 minutes
Servings: Six hearty bowls

 

 

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Spicy Black Bean Soup

I’m convinced that there is no wrong way to make a soup. I rarely start out with a clear intention in mind but as I start chopping and picking ingredients out of the fridge my vision starts to come together. I often post my soup recipes so I have a rough guideline to follow the next time I’m craving the main ingredient i.e black beans, lentils, chick peas, etc… yet I rarely follow a recipe exactly as it’s more important to me to use up what is available and fresh in my fridge. This latest creation was warming and full flavored, a perfect rainy day soup. I experimented with pureeing it halfway down and then adding whole black beans and also pureeing the whole thing then adding more beans and both were delicious. The consistency will be entirely up to you as I think it works any way you choose.

Spicy Black Bean Soup

3 tbsp olive oil
1 large onion, diced
5 cloves of garlic, minced
1 celery rib, diced
1 carrot, diced
2 tsp cumin
1 large jalapeño or serrano pepper, diced
1 4oz can green chilies
2 1/2 cups plus 1 cup of cooked black beans
1/2 small can tomato paste
1 tsp cayenne
1 bay leaf
4 cups of water or vegetable stock
juice of 1/2 lime
handful cilantro, chopped
sea salt and fresh pepper
1 cup frozen corn (optional)

1) Warm olive oil in a large soup pot over medium high heat. Add onions, carrots, celery, garlic and cumin and saute until onions are translucent.
2) Add hot peppers and chilies and stir together for 2 minutes.
3) Add 2 1/2 cups of black beans, tomato paste, cayenne, water or vegetable stock and bay leaf.
4) Bring to a light boil, reduce heat and simmer for 30-45 minutes.
5) Remove bay leaf. Add lime, salt, pepper and cilantro.
6) Puree according to preferred consistency. Add remaining cup of cooked beans and corn (if using) and simmer for another few minutes.
7) Serve with chopped green onions and tortilla chips.

Prep Time: 15 minutes
Cooking Time: 45 minutes to 1 hour
Servings: 4 hearty bowls

 

 

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Split Pea Soup

After seeing how many soups have the option of pureeing all the ingredients after they are cooked, I decided to try something different with this one and puree all the vegetables prior to cooking them. The result? A delicious, even flavor with optional consistency. 

Split Pea Soup

2 cups of dried green split peas, rinsed and sorted (optional: soaked overnight to increase digestibility)
2 tbsp of olive oil or earth balance
5 large garlic cloves, peeled
1 medium sized onion, coarsely chopped
2 medim sized carrots, coarsely chopped
2 celery sticks, coarsely chopped
2 medium sized potatoes, peeled and cut into small cubes
2 bouillon cube and 6 cups of water or 6 cups of vegetable stock (adjust accordingly)
Herbs: bay leaf, rosemary, thyme, sea salt and fresh pepper

1. Place onion, garlic, carrot, and celery in a blender or food processor and puree until smooth (add a little water if needed).
2. Heat olive oil and/or earth balance in a large soup pot on medium high heat. Once hot, add contents from blender/food processor. Cook until slightly darkened.
3. Add washed and drained peas. Let sit for a minute in mixture to blend flavors.
4. Add bay leaf and vegetable stock or water with bouillon. Bring to a boil. Add potatoes, reduce heat to medium and cover.
5. Once peas are soft they’ll start falling apart. Pull out bay leaf.
6. Add remaining seasonings to taste (about 8-10 shakes of each herb plus 15 cranks of fresh pepper and a tablespoon of sea salt).
7. To puree you can use an immersion blender, a wire whisk (for a thicker
consistency), you can also puree in a blender or simply leave it as is.
8. Serve with some fresh ground pepper.

Total prep and cooking time: 1 to 1 1/2 hours
Servings: About 6 hearty bowls

 

 

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