Chipotle Black Bean Soup with Winter Squash

I’ve just returned from the 5 day Southern California field trip.

I haven’t been grocery shopping in 2 weeks given our busy traveling schedule.

And yet, I’m still able to pull something out of the staples that we have.  This recipe is a variation off of a Black Bean Soup my mother-in-law gave me.  The only problem was I didn’t have all the ingredients, so I had to improvise and substitute.

Hints: use canned chipotle peppers, then freeze the remaining leftovers which will keep for a couple of months.  Feel free to substitute the squash and beans with whatever you have as this is a recipe for times when you haven’t gone grocery shopping.  Also, always get low sodium canned goods; if you read the labels you’d be pretty astounded at how much sodium is in beans and tomatoes.  Also, always drain canned beans because it gets rid of about 70% of the sodium content.

The ingredients:

Chipotle Black Bean Soup with Winter Squash

From top left: 1/2 butternut squash, 1 medium sweet potato, 1-15 ounce can white beans, 1 15-ounce can black beans, 1 14.5-ounce can diced tomatoes, 1 chipotle pepper with 1 tablespoon adobo sauce (or 1 jalapeno; I know in the picture it looks like liver), 5 cloves garlic, minced, 1 medium yellow onion, 1 heaping tablespoon cumin.

Step 1:Cut the squash and sweet potato into 1 inch pieces.  Also chop up the onion.

Step 2: Add 1 tablespoon olive oil to a dutch oven pot and saute HALF the onions and HALF the garlic.  Saute until translucent.

Step 3:Drain the beans and rinse thoroughly to remove excess salt.  Place in the dutch oven pot, then add 2 cans worth of water.  Also add the squash, sweet potato.  Bring to a boil, then simmer about 20 minutes while the squash and sweet potato cooks.

Step 4: While the first half of the soup simmers, combine the remaining onion, 1 tablespoon cumin, chipotle and sauce, and remaining garlic in a food processor or blender.  Drain the tomatoes to remove excess salt, then add these to the food processor as well.  Process until smooth.Step 4: In a medium saute pan , over medium heat, add 1 tablespoon olive oil.  Add in your tomato mixture.  It’s like a sofrito, a sauteed mixture of onions, tomato and garlic commonly used in Latin cooking.  Cook for 3-4 minutes, stirring occasionally.

The Sofrito

Step 5: Combine the sofrito tomato mixture into the soup pot.  Stir to combine.   You can be done here, or if you want extra creaminess, like me, take 2-3 ladle-fuls of the soup mixture, and puree it in your food processor, then add it back to the soup.

The soup makes great leftovers.  It’s quite pungent.  I had 2 high schoolers curiously ask “What’s that smell?” when I opened my tupperware for lunch.  In other words, be prepared to explain your recipe.

Fabulousness in under 30 minutes

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