Monday, February 07, 2011

Black Bean Soup...

This soup is heaven. Don't let the ingred. list intimidate, this is an open and dump recipe. It took me 10 minutes to put together. My daughter LOVES Black Bean Soup.
10 slices bacon, finely chopped
2 medium onions, chopped (about 2 1/2 cups)
6 garlic cloves, pressed
1 (14 1/2-ounce) can reduced-sodium chicken broth
1 1/2 cups canned chopped tomatoes
2 tablespoons ketchup
2 teaspoons Worcestershire sauce (Lea & Perrins)
1 tablespoon chili powder
4 (15 1/2-ounce) cans black beans, drained but not rinsed
Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
1 bunch cilantro
juice of 1/2 lime
Thinly sliced scallions, for garnish
Sour cream for garnish
Grated cheddar for garnish
Put the bacon into a large heavy pot and place it over medium heat. Cook until it starts to give up its fat, about 4 minutes. Stir in the onions and cook, stirring, until they start to turn translucent, about 4 minutes. Stir in the garlic and cook until you can smell it, about 1 minute. Add the broth, tomatoes, ketchup, Worcestershire, and chili powder. Stir in the beans, turn the heat to high and bring to a boil. Adjust the heat so the soup is bubbling gently and cook 10 minutes. Season with salt and pepper.
Meanwhile, pick off all the thick stems from the cilantro. Wash it and shake dry. Chop the cilantro coarsely and stir it into the soup when it has been simmering 10 minutes. cook until the soup is thickened, about 5 minutes. Stir in the lime juice. Serve with the garnishes.

However, if you don't have these ingreds. & you happen to have some Jack's Special Salsa from Costco... you can make the really, really fast version which is really my SIL Jenni's (cook extraordinaire!) go to recipe...

1 cup Jack's Salsa
4 cans black beans
2 T chili powder

Simmer 15-20 mins

If you want, you can top with some of the toppings in the above recipe.. but this soup can stand alone :)


This film is iridescent. I loved it!

See the trailer here...

Garlic & Sapphires...

I really enjoyed this book. Next to my home state of Utah, NYC holds the second place in my heart. But, it's not for it's fine restaurants. I wouldn't dare go to any of these places and declare that I don't drink. And, since I don't drink wine, I'm not sure I would like Foie gras, which seems to be on the menu in all these places.

But, still, I loved reading about these places I will probably never visit. I felt like Ruth was right in the room telling me about her adventures in Flushing Queens, (this I MUST someday see). My favorite person in the book was Ed Levine. I would love to meet him. When I go to NYC, that's what I do, I eat myself up and down the streets. I would have loved to see the candy shop. I bet it isn't there anymore sadly.

You walk off the street into a little pizza place and it's just the best you've ever tasted. New York smells like food... and a few other things, but if you concentrate it just smells mostly of really good food.

Also, I've never found NY to be snobby or the people to be rude. I only had one cab driver treat me badly. .. so I don't ride in the black cabs anymore, just the yellow ones. But, I learned to use the subway and it's such a better way to travel around the city.

Anyway, I could go on.. but the book was an adventure in food, my kind of adventure! And, a kind of tribute to a favorite city. Lots of fun!

Ruth Reichl's Spaghetti Carbonara...

This was my first try at this recipe and it's not too pretty... However, it's easy, quick and Delish!
And, she's right... kids love this...
From Ruth Reichl's Site HERE...
Contrary to the recipe so often used in restaurants, real carbonara contains no cream. The real thing also uses guanciale, cured pork jowl, but to be honest, I like bacon better. I think of this as bacon and eggs with pasta instead of toast. It's the perfect last minute dinner, and I've yet to meet a child who doesn't like it.
1 pound spaghetti
1/4 to 1/2 pound thickly sliced good quality bacon (I prefer Nueske's)
2 cloves garlic, peeled
2 large eggs
Black pepper
1/2 cup grated Parmigiano cheese, plus extra for the table
Bring a large pot of salted water to boil. When it is boiling, throwthe spaghetti in. Most dried spaghetti takes 9 to 10 minutes to cook,and you can make the sauce in that time.
Cut the bacon crosswise into pieces about 1/2 inch wide. Put them in a skillet and cook for 2 minutes, until fat begins to render. Add the whole cloves of garlic and cook another 5 minutes, until the edges of the bacon just begin to get crisp. Do not overcook; if they get too crisp they won't meld with the pasta. Meanwhile, break the eggs into the bowl you will serve the pasta in, and beat them with a fork. Add some grindings of pepper.Remove the garlic from the bacon pan. If it looks like too much to you, discard some, but you're going to toss the bacon with most of its fat into the pasta. When it is cooked, drain the pasta and immediately throw it into the beaten eggs. Mix thoroughly. The heat of the spaghetti will cook the eggs and turn them into a sauce. Add the bacon with its fat, toss again, add cheese and serve.