It must be this bone chilling weather we're having, all I can think about is soup. Any time I think about Black Bean Soup I think of The Columbia Restaurant in St. Augustine, Florida. The restaurant originated in Ybor City, Florida, outside of Tampa. They have six locations and are the largest Spanish restaurant in the nation and the oldest in Florida. The food and the decor of the restaurants are fabulous.
Their Black Bean Soup and the 1905 Salad (I'll post that later) helped to make them famous. This is a wonderful vegan or vegetarian dish. A hearty dish that would satisfy anyone.
This freezes beautifully.
Black Bean Soup - Frijoles Negros
1 pound black beans, dried
2 quarts water
2 medium onions chopped fine
1 bay leaf
2 green peppers, cut in strips
1/2 cup olive oil
1 teaspoon oregano
4 cloves garlic, minced
1/4 teaspoon ground cumin
1 tablespoon salt (I use less)
1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
White rice, cooked
Chopped Onions for garnish
Before washing beans, spread on a flat surface and pick out broken beans and foreign particles. Wash beans thoroughly and soak overnight in 2 quarts of water.
Next day, pour beans and water into a 4 quart soup kettle; bring to a boil. Cover and cook over medium heat.
Meanwhile, in a skillet, saute onions and green peppers in olive oil until light golden. Add crushed oregano, bay leaf, cumin, and garlic. Add mixture to beans, stirring well. Add salt and pepper and cook slowly over low heat, covered, until beans are tender (at least an hour). Serve over white rice and top with chopped onions. Serves 4-6.