Soup No. 8: Holy Frijoles, Batman!

Dec.06.09 § Leave a comment

I eat beans religiously. There are lots of beans in every soup I make. You may have made note of this by now, or I may have given some sort of disclaimer. This recipe is a good example of why I love cooking with them. This recipe also represents my first ever original recipe, not influenced by family tradition and not just an alteration of someone else’s recipe. Because of that, while I was writing the recipe and in the kitchen putting it together, there was A LOT going on in my head. “This is going to turn out terrible, you should just use a recipe, are you sure you should add another teaspoon of that? Do you really want to turn on the immersion blender?” etc, etc. But, much to my surprise, the soup is exactly what I wanted and just the kind of soup I always hope for when I’m making a recipe from a book. It never turns out and I guess that’s because it’s someone else’s. This, ladies and gentlemen, is mine, all mine! And now its yours, all yours!

Holy Frijoles soup (more accurately: Vegetable Pinto bean soup)

1 fresh chili pepper of your choice, seeded and minced

2 carrots, peeled and diced

2 ribs celery, diced

2 medium yellow onions, diced

6 garlic cloves, minced

2 tbsp chili oil

1 tsp oregano

1 tsp cumin

2 tsps chili powder

1/8 cup fresh parsley, chopped

2 tsps Worcestershire sauce

2 tsps ketchup

1 28-oz can diced tomatoes

4 cups soaked and cooked (or two cans) pinto beans

4 cups vegetable broth

sliced scallions, parsley and shredded cheese for serving


Chop all the vegetables beforehand. Dicing takes me longer with carrots and celery, as opposed to slicing, but you can do either. I like the veggies in smaller pieces in this soup.

Heat a large soup pot over medium high heat and add the chili oil when the pot is hot. Add the onions and chili pepper. Sweat the onion and pepper for about five minutes, then add the carrots and celery. Continue to cook for about seven minutes, then add the garlic, seasoning, parsley, Worcestershire sauce and ketchup. Let that mixture meld for about five minutes.

Add the tomatoes, stir and cover the pot. You may want to turn the heat down to medium or medium low. Let the flavors get happy for about ten minutes. Then add the beans and continue to cook until the beans are heated through. Add the vegetable broth. Then, with an immersion blender, blend enough of the beans and soup together to make a stewpy consistency. You may blend completely in a blender or food processor, but if you choose this method, let the soup cool completely beforehand, then blend and reheat. With an immersion blender, it’s done right in the pot and you’re ready to serve.

I added some shredded cheese, a pinch of chopped scallions and a parsley leaf to mine before eating. You could also use tortilla strips. The end. I hope you like it!


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