Thursday 13 September 2007

Cuban Cure Black Bean Soup

This comforting and delicious soup was shown on Nigella Lawson’s Christmas Special (UK - BBC 2006). It’s not in any of her books, although I would have thought it’d have fitted right in with Nigella Express, but who am I to say what should go in and what shouldn’t.

Anyhow, I can remember Nigella making it in a darkish kitchen as a pick-me-up-and-feed-me after a night on the razzle dazzle! I thought at the time that it looked good, and have a thing for chorizo sausage generally, but it must have become lost and forgotten in the midst of the Christmas celebrations last year. Recently I saw my friend Lisa raving about how good it was and thought I really must make it. Particularly since I managed to find some black beans a little while ago.

It tastes like so much more than its ingredients, a really truly comforting soup, delicious with the sausage, slightly spicy with the cumin, and zingy with the lime and coriander (cilantro) – and then there’s the beans. Perhaps because black beans are new-ish to me, I discovered then 12 years ago, they seem so non-pedestrian and special. I even like the name black turtle beans, although for no particular food based reason, just that I am very fond of turtles (live turtles that is!).

I served this for lunch, and will be making this one again for sure. It’s also quite light, energising but not jading. Thanks Lisa for prompting me into making it, I’d have been missing a great fast soup! My little one ate this as well, which was an added surprise bonus! More Nigella Express next time.

Cuban Cure Black Bean Soup
By Nigella Lawson recipe from here.

150g/5oz chorizo cooking sausage
2 spring onions
½ tsp ground cumin
425g/15oz tin black beans, rinsed and drained
1 fresh tomato, roughly chopped
500ml/17fl oz chicken stock (from fresh or concentrate)
1 lime, juice only
2-4 tbsp chopped, fresh coriander

1. Slice the chorizo sausage into slices about the size of one-pound coins. Slice each of the chorizo discs in half.

2. Place the chorizo pieces into a large saucepan over a medium heat and cook over a medium heat for five minutes, or until they start to become crisp. Remove the chorizo with a slotted spoon and drain on kitchen paper.

3. Slice off the green parts of the spring onions and finely slice them. Set the green parts of the spring onions aside.

4. Finely slice the white part of the spring onions and add the pieces to the frying pan the chorizo was cooked in. Add the ground cumin to the pan, and cook over a gentle heat for two minutes, stirring the mixture.

5. Add the black beans, tomato and the chicken stock. Stir the mixture in the pan and simmer for ten minutes.

6. To serve, ladle the soup into two clean bowls. Add the chorizo pieces and the finely chopped green spring onion to the bowls. Add some lime juice, to taste, to each bowl and sprinkle the chopped coriander on top.


Lydia (The Perfect Pantry) said...

Chorizo and black beans is such a wonderful combination. I make it into a soup, like this one, and also into various kinds of stew with chicken added.

Coffee and Vanilla said...

Very interesting recipe.
I must admit I have never tried black beans... now I can't wait to buy them!
Greetings, Margot

Meeta K. Wolff said...

Love the combination - I can simply taste the flavors!

Amanda at Little Foodies said...

I love chorizo, and I like black beans, but I've never had the two together. We went to Cuba about 10 years ago and didn't eat great food. It was probably made for what they thought tourists wanted but it just tasted bland. I wish we'd eaten 'real' Cuban food.
I think your Cuban soup would win hands down!

Deborah said...

This sounds delicious, and a combination I have never had before. I'm adding this to the list!!

Valerie Harrison (bellini) said...

It sounds like a truly comforting soup with all it's homey ingredients!!

Dee Light said...

I love black beans!!! This soup sounds fantastic.

Pat said...

Oh this sounds lovely, But think I might substitute smoked sausage for the Chorizo. Love soups like this and it is soon becoming soup weather!!!

Kelly-Jane said...

Lydia, chicken, black bean and chorizo stew sounds fab!

Margot, they are worth a go, yummy!

Meeta, mmm :)

Amanda, you can always make this one and see if it takes you back... :)

Deborah, I thought it was so good!

Valli, it is - yum!

Dee Light, me too :)

Pat, smoked sausage would give it a differnt flavour, but beans and sausage are a winning combo :)


Lisa said...

K-J, I love this soup! It's become one of my all-time favorites. I'm glad you made it!

ruth wellwisher said...

I notice that Nigella suggests using the fluid left over from her "ham in coca cola recipe" as a basis for this soup. Once the ham is cooked I'll try this!

Anonymous said...

Thank you thank you thank you. At the moment I'm down with the flu and a fever and all I could think about was this soup that I saw Nigella make on tv. Tomorrow... Can't wait! Thanks for posting this recipe!

Anonymous said...

Thanks so much for posting this recipe. I watched Nigella's Christmas and really loved the sound of it but have been unable to find the recipe anywhere since.

lah said...

so glad to have found this recipe again!!! Made it last year after watching Nigella's christmas but misplaced recipe I'd jotted down, can't wait to try it again!!

Meat Pipe said...

Goddamn gorgeous :)

Em said...

This recipe is in Nigella Christmas

Kelly-Jane said...

Hi Em, it is indeed in Nigella Christmas, but when I posted this Nigella Christmas was not yet published. KJ

Anonymous said...

It's in her christmas cook book.