This traditional Costa Rican soup — called sopa negra in Latin America — is filling and delicious. Use a blender for easy preparation. You’ll end up with a yummy lunch when it’s paired with a slice of iDiet Soda Bread and a piece of fruit for dessert. This soup will freeze well in individual portions for a quick, easy meal.
1 pound dried black beans or 6 cups canned black beans (about 4 15-ounce cans)
2 Tablespoons corn or canola oil
1 medium onion, finely chopped
½ red bell pepper, finely chopped
1 clove garlic, chopped
1/3 C finely chopped fresh cilantro
2 teaspoons salt (optional)
1 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
1 ¼ C canned diced tomatoes
1 teaspoon low-fat sour cream per serving (optional)
1 teaspoon finely chopped scallion per serving for garnish (optional)
- If using dried beans, soak them overnight in water to cover. Drain the beans and bring to a boil in about 8 cups of water, then reduce the heat and let simmer, covered, until just softened, about one hour. Set aside 3 cups of the bean-cooking liquid.
- Place the oil in a large saucepan over medium heat. Add the onion, bell pepper and garlic and cook until starting to brown, about five minutes.
- Add 3 cups of the black beans and the cilantro, salt and black pepper and cook for a couple of minutes.
- Using a blender, puree the bean mixture until semi-smooth and then return to pan. Add the remaining black beans, the reserved bean-cooking liquid and the tomatoes and let simmer, covered, until the flavors develop, about 10 minutes.
- Season the soup with Tabasco sauce to taste and garnish with sour cream and/or scallions, if desired.
Note: If you use canned beans, drain them, reserving the liquid. Add enough low-sodium chicken broth for a total of three cups of liquid and use this in place of the bean-cooking liquid.
Vegetarian, Gluten Intolerant, Suitable for High Blood Pressure, Suitable for High Cholesterol, Suitable for Diabetics
Excerpted from The “I” Diet Copyright ©2008, 2010 by Susan B. Roberts, LLC and Elizabeth Kelly Sargent. Used by permission of Workman Publishing Co., Inc., New York. All Rights Reserved.