Perhaps its the early summer weather, but I have had very low motivation to go grocery shopping lately. This has left me rummaging around the cupboards and fridge when dinnertime comes, trying to construct something healthy and flavorful that will also produce enough leftovers for lunch the next day. Earlier last week I had tweeted about having an excess of celery in my fridge and that I was unsure how best to use it. A friend in New Zealand wrote back and suggested that I make black bean soup, but with an increased amount of celery. I was intrigued, but last week was so hot and humid it was hard to think about cooking soup. So I came up with this very quick soup (and turned on the air conditioner briefly while it cooked) and then added cool, chopped vegetables to it to increase the volume, crunch and freshness.
Simple Black Bean and Celery Soup
1 small onion
3 cloves garlic
5 stalks of celery
2 cans black beans
2 cubes veggie bullion
1 TBL ground cumin
2 tsp corriander
Salt, pepper, and red pepper flakes to taste
4 cups water (you can also use vegetable stock instead of water and bullion)
1 TBL olive oil
1. Chop the onions and then in a soup pot saute the onions over medium high heat until they are translucent.
2. Chop the garlic and add to the onions and cook for about 1 to 2 minutes, stirring frequently.
3. Chop the celery and carrots and put them in the pot. Add the black beans. Add the cumin, corriander, salt, pepper and red pepper flakes. Saute for 2 minutes, stirring constantly.
4. Add the bullion cubes and water and stir.
5. Cover the pot and bring to a brisk simmer. Stir and reduce the heat, and let the soup simmer until the celery and carrots are soft.
6. Turn off the heat and use an immersion blender to blend the soup together until it’s fairly creamy.
To each bowl of soup add garnish (below), a squeeze of lime juice, and about an 1/8th of a cup of Greek yogurt (optional, leave out to keep the soup dairy free).
For garnish (per serving)
10 cherry tomatoes
1/4 red bell pepper
1 TBS fresh cilantro
Chop the vegetables and stir them into the soup. Enjoy!