DSCF3462I know what you are thinking, soup again? ….. Si, muchachos!

If you are in the mood for quick and easy, spicy and filling then this is the recipe for you.

With four dried, different sized chipotle peppers in the fridge and the feeling that I wanted to do something daring and drastic, I plopped those babies in a bowl of H2O and seized the moment.

Last fall, I acquired whole cumin at a cute little spice shop while car-uising the back roads of New York State.  I began to think of dishes that would incorporate both the cumin and the chipotle peppers.  Of course, Mexican cuisine was first and foremost on the brain.

Red pepper almost made it into the dish but, at the last-minute, I changed my mind. The next time, I think I will omit the green pepper and try red, yellow and or orange peppers for a mix of sweet and spicy.
The remainder of ingredients are ones that I use frequently in Mexican dishes. The beans were prepared using the quick method described on the package.

I have just started experimenting with toasting herbs and spices to bring about more robust flavor. I’m not sure if this actually works but they smell really good in the process of heating!

Depending on how much of a liquid base you want, this soup serves 6-10.

1 16 oz bag dry black beans
1 large onion, diced
1 green pepper, diced
3 large cloves garlic, minced
1 tablespoon whole cumin, toasted
1 tsp marjaram, toasted
1 tsp coriander ground or seeds, toasted (I only had ground on hand but prefer seeds)
2+ dried chipotle peppers, soaked in water, then diced (I used four because that is the kind of chick I am)
1 lime, juice and zest
2 tsp sea salt
cracked black pepper to taste

Soak beans overnight and cook the next day until tender. Soak chipotle peppers in water until ready to use. Toast cumin, marjaram and coriander for a few minutes, stirring constantly on medium heat. Remove from heat and set aside. In a large soup pot, sauté onion and green pepper for 5-7 minutes on medium heat . Add water as needed to keep veggies from burning. Remove chipotles from water and dice. Add garlic, toasted spices, chipotle peppers and cook for another few minutes. Add lime, lime zest, beans and enough water or vegetable broth to create a suitable base (oops, I used water but forgot to measure the amount!). Heat, covered, for 30 minutes.

Are you daring enough to try four chipotles? Please leave a comment…