Enjoy the combination of flavors and vegetables in this Southwestern Vegetarian Black Bean Soup. It may take a bit of time to prep and cook, but the end result is worth it.
1 pound dried black beans
1/2 cup water
1/2 ounce dried chipotle chile
2 tablespoons vegetable oil
1 1/2 cups chopped onion
3/4 cup chopped carrot
3/4 cup chopped celery
3/4 cup chopped green bell pepper
3/4 cup chopped red bell pepper
2 garlic cloves, minced
3 1/2 cups canned vegetable broth
1 cup dry sherry
2 tablespoons ground cumin
1 tablespoon chili powder
1 tablespoon dried oregano
2 tablespoons honey
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/8 teaspoon pepper
2 (14.5-ounce) cans diced tomatoes, undrained
1 bay leaf
7 tablespoons nonfat sour cream
Cilantro sprigs (optional)
How to Make It
Sort and wash beans; place in a large Dutch oven. Cover with water to 2 inches above beans; bring to a boil, and cook 2 minutes. Remove from heat; cover and let stand 1 hour. Drain beans in a colander; set aside.
Combine 1/2 cup water and chile in a small saucepan; bring to a boil. Remove water and chile from heat; cover and let stand 10 minutes or until chile is softened. Place water and chile in a food processor, and process 1 minute or until smooth. Set chile puree aside.
Heat oil in a Dutch oven over medium-high heat. Add onion and next 5 ingredients (onion through garlic); saute 7 minutes. Add beans, 2 tablespoons chile puree, broth, and next 10 ingredients (broth through bay leaf); bring to a boil. Cover, reduce heat, and simmer 1 hour. Discard bay leaf.
Remove 4 cups of beans and vegetables from soup with a slotted spoon; set aside. Place half of remaining soup in a blender; process until smooth, and pour into a bowl. Repeat procedure with other half of soup. Return pureed soup to pan, and stir in 4 cups of the bean-vegetable mixture. Cook soup over medium-low heat until thoroughly heated. Ladle soup into individual bowls; top with sour cream, and garnish with cilantro, if desired. Serve with remaining chile puree, if desired.