By Alicia Ross
I’ve never met a well-seasoned soup that I didn’t like. Now, with that said, I’ve met a host of soups and stews that were as bland as bark. I couldn’t even improve them with salt and black pepper.
Today’s recipe for Black Bean and Tomato Soup falls directly into the well-seasoned category, and I think you are going to love it. It may seem insignificant, but the thyme, cumin, vinegar and lone bay leaf combine for a special kind of seasoning. Of course, the green bell pepper, onion and garlic don’t hurt either. These additions to a few canned and frozen vegetables elevate this soup from boring to beautiful.
For a heartier meal, you can serve this soup over a bed of white or brown rice. Either way, I hope this simple yet savory soup becomes a favorite in your kitchen this winter. Enjoy!
Black Bean and Tomato Soup
1 tsp. olive oil
¼ cup onion, finely diced
¼ cup green bell pepper, finely diced
1 clove garlic, minced
1 can (15 oz.) black beans, drained and rinsed
1 can (14 oz.) petite diced tomatoes
¼ cup frozen corn kernels
1 cup vegetable broth (see note)
1 tsp. red wine vinegar (see note)
1 bay leaf
¼ tsp. dried thyme
¼ tsp. dried cumin
Salt and black pepper to taste
In a small soup pot, heat the oil over medium. Add onion, pepper and garlic. Stir and cook 1 minute or until onion begins to soften. Add beans, tomatoes with their juice, corn, broth, vinegar, bay leaf, thyme and cumin.
Cover and raise heat to medium-high to bring to a boil; lower heat to simmer to blend flavors for 10 minutes or until ready to serve. Taste and adjust seasoning, if necessary, with salt and black pepper. Remove bay leaf before serving.
Makes 2 servings, easily doubled.
Notes: You can use 1 vegetable bouillon cube and 1 cup water or already prepared broth. Red wine vinegar is my favorite, but white wine, champagne or even cider vinegar will still give the soup the flavor you need. Balsamic vinegar is a little heavy for this recipe.
Each serving has about 419 calories, 5 grams fat (0.9 grams saturated), no cholesterol, 25 grams protein, 71 grams carbohydrates, 18 grams dietary fiber, 398 milligrams sodium.