February 23, 2015

Cuban Heat!

Cuban Black Bean Soup

Cuban Black Bean Soup
with Cumin and Lime

Serves 4

Just returned from Cuba, a pretty country, gracious people and fabulous food. On this tiny island, the Cubans grow nearly 90% of the fresh produce they enjoy in vibrant salads and robust dishes of beans and rice. Soon as I return to our sub-zero winter, I craved homey warmth.  

Fragrant with cumin and sparked with fresh lime juice and a splash of rum, this hearty soup makes a great dinner paired with a hunk of cornbread. Make a big batch, it tastes even better the next day and freezes beautifully.

2 tablespoons vegetable oil
1 large onion, chopped
2 cloves minced garlic
1-1/2 tablespoons ground cumin, or more to taste
2 tablespoons dark rum, optional
3 cups cooked or canned black beans, drained
4 cups vegetable stock or water
Salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste
Couple of dashes Tabasco or hot sauce, to taste
1 tablespoon fresh lime juice, or more to taste
Minced cilantro for garnish

In a large deep skillet set over medium-high, heat the oil and sauté the onion and garlic until translucent, about 3 to 5 minutes then stir in the cumin and cook an additional minute.
Stir in the rum, beans, stock and bring to a boil. Reduce the heat to simmer for about 10 minutes. Working in batches, puree about half of the beans in a blender and return to the pot. Season to taste with salt, pepper, Tabasco, and lime juice. Serve garnished with the cilantro.