I had every intention of making pasta fagioli for dinner on Wednesday night. But on Tuesday night, after I went grocery shopping, I discovered I didn't have any cannellini beans in the pantry. At all. So it was time for a new game plan- I still wanted to make a soup, and I wanted to use only what I currently had on hand.
I didn't have any white beans, but I did have some black beans, so I found a recipe for black bean soup (which I didn't realize was a thing until I Google'd it). I had to make some adjustments- for one thing, I cut the recipe in half, because I don't have 8-10 people to feed, and for another, I didn't have any onions or Worcestershire sauce. The result is this delicious bowl of comfort that is sort of like a different take on taco soup- especially if you serve it with corn chips. I found it to be just perfect with a dollop of sour cream and a sprinkle of cheddar cheese stirred in, and the toddler in our house, who has recently decided to be a picky eater, ate every single bite (and then some). You could also go easy on the liquids and serve this with rice as more of a side dish than a soup, if you wanted.
Black Bean Soup
adapted from Dave Lieberman
-5 slices of thick-cut bacon, sliced into thin lardons
-3 garlic cloves, finely minced
-1 C low-sodium chicken stock (more for a thinner soup, less for a thicker stew-y dish)
-1 (14.5oz) can diced tomatoes
-1 Tbsp ketchup
-splash of white wine (1 tsp?)
-dash of chili powder (couple tsp?)
-2 (15.5oz) cans black beans, drained
-1 (14.75oz) can corn, drained
-salt and pepper to taste
-1 tsp parsley
-juice of 1 lime
-sour cream and shredded cheddar cheese, for garnish
-Render the tiny bits of bacon in a dutch oven (or other heavy pot) over medium heat. Once the bacon is crisp, toss in the garlic.
-Just when the garlic becomes fragrant- only about a minute- pour in the chicken stock, tomatoes, ketchup, wine, and chili powder. Give it a stir, then add in the beans and corn and stir it some more.
-Bring to a boil, then reduce to a simmer. Let it bubble for about 10 minutes, then stir in the parsley.
-Give it another 5 minutes and you'll notice it thickening up; squeeze in the lime juice, then season with salt and pepper.
-Top with a dollop of sour cream and a sprinkle of cheddar cheese, then enjoy!
**This makes about 5 or 6 servings, which was perfect for us- a serving each for dinner, then a serving each of leftovers. Feel free to use the original amounts in the recipe- that is, double this recipe- if you're feeding a larger family or want to freeze half for later.**
What's your go-to pantry-raiding recipe? Have you ever had to switch gears on your dinner plans when you noticed a key ingredient was missing?