Monday is soup day at our house, the reason for this being that I ususally take advantage of the weekend to prepare a soup which can then only be reheated come monday night. I like to think of that as quite a brilliant concept: mondays are sometimes a bit difficult (at least for me they are) so the thought of a bowl of home-made, hearty soup at the end of the day with no work involved - apart from cleaning up - can really do something to cheer you up.
You may remember that I stock many varieties of pulses and that I'm determined to get rid of these stocks. The plan is proceeding extremely well and after making the above-pictured black eyed beans and vegetable soup, I only have a handfull of these ones left.
For two hungry soup-lovers, take
- 120g of black eyed beans (or another kind of beans), soaked overnight
- 1 small red onion, finely chopped
- 2 carrots, finely diced
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- 50-60g smoky bacon (my piece was quite lean, use less oil if yours is fatty), chopped
- some dried or fresh chili (leave it out if you don't like the heat)
- 0.5 tablespoon dried oregano
- 150g chopped, tinned tomatoes
- 1 vegetable stock cube
- salt and pepper
- 1 small bunch of flat-leaf parsley, chopped
The night before making the soup, soak the beans in plenty of cold water. If you're like me and forget to do this, cook them in a pressure cooker for about ten minutes. In a large pan, heat the olive oil. Add the bacon, onion, chili (if using) and oregano and cook until the onion is soft. Add the carrots and cook for another minute, then add the beans, tomatoes, stock cube and plenty of water so that the beans and vegetables are completely covered. Bring to a boil, then reduce the heat and simmer for about 45 minutes until the beans and the carrots are very tender. Season with salt and pepper. Just before serving, stir in the parsley.
I find that these kind of soups are even better when reheated, so do prepare it ahead if you can. It could also be frozen; the beans might disintegrate a bit but that won't affect the taste, only the look of the soup.