Black bean soup recipe

Denis Cotter
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Black bean soup recipe

This is a rich, intensely flavoured soup with lots of bold Mexican tastes.  Although the soup is pureed, it retains a chunky texture by virtue of some of it being coarsely mashed while the rest is blended.  Chipotle chillies have a distinctive smoky flavour.  If you can't find them, add another fresh chilli and a teaspoon or two of smoked paprika.

At a glance
  • Cuisine Mexican
  • Recipe Type Starter
  • Difficulty Medium
  • Preparation time 20 mins
  • Cooking time 55 mins
  • Serves 4 people
  • 2 tbsp olive oil
  • 2 red onions, finely chopped
  • 4 garlic cloves, chopped
  • 1 fresh green chilli, deseeded if you prefer and finely chopped
  • 1 chipotle chilli, finely chopped
  • 1 tsp dried oregano
  • 2 tsp ground cumin
  • 2 tsp ground coriander
  • 1 tsp ground allspice
  • 0.5 red pepper, deseeded and finely chopped
  • 2 celery sticks, finely chopped
  • 500 g (17.6oz) dried black kidney beans, soaked and cooked or 800g drained tinned beans
  • 1 tbsp tomato puree
  • 1 l (1.8pints) vegetable stock
  • 30 g (1.1oz) dark chocolate, finely chopped
  • 1 good pinch of salt
  • 3 tbsp soured cream to serve
For the avocado salsa
  • 1 avocado, peeled stoned and diced
  • 2 spring onions, finely chopped
  • 1 tbsp chopped fresh coriander
  • 1 lime, juiced


  1. Heat the olive oil in a large, heavy saucepan, and sauté the onion for 5 minutes over medium heat. Add the garlic, chillies, oregano, ground spices, red pepper and celery, and simmer for 7-8 minutes more, until the vegetables are soft. Add the beans, tomato purée and stock, bring to the boil, then cover and simmer for 40 minutes.
  2. Scoop one-third of the soup into a food processor and pulse to get a coarse mash. Use a hand-held blender to make a smooth purée of the rest of the soup, then return the mash to the pan. Melt in the chocolate and season the soup with salt.
  3. Make the avocado salsa by combining all of the ingredients in a bowl.
  4. Serve the soup with a spoonful of the salsa and a swirl of soured cream on top.

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Book - For the Love of Food

Publisher - HarperCollins

Restaurant - Cafe Paradiso