Matthew's Black Bean Soup

“An old friend found this recipe that I gave to her over 10 years ago. I came up with the recipe to copy a version at a cafe near UNM while I was in college. I made a few updates, but it's just as tasty as I remember. Fresh cilantro is essential for garnish - it add such a nice bright flavor to this hearty, earthy soup. I used to make it every year for Dia de los Muertos (Day of the Dead, November 2nd - the Mexican holiday similar to Halloween).”

Ingredients Nutrition


  1. Heat the olive oil in a large stock pot. Add the chopped fresh vegetables except the garlic (onion, carrot, green and red bell peppers, and jalapeno). Saute over medium heat until vegetables are softened, about 10 - 12 minutes.
  2. Stir in the garlic, the chopped ham, the cumin and the cayenne pepper and saute an additional 3 - 5 minutes, until garlic is softened and spices are toasted.
  3. Deglaze the pan with the sherry, and add in the black beans (for a thicker soup mash about 1 cup of the beans before adding). Also add the corn, tomato, and green chiles. Stir in the chicken stock, adding extra to cover if necessary. Bring the mixture to a boil and stir in the oregano.
  4. Lower the heat and bring the soup to a low simmer. Simmer the soup, partially covered for about 45 minutes, or until the desired consistency is reached (add more liquid if too much boils away). Stir in one-third to one-half of the cilantro.Taste for seasoning, adding more salt and pepper as desired. Reserve the rest of the cilantro for serving.
  5. Serve with your choice of fixins: fresh chopped cilantro, hot flour tortillas, shredded Colby-jack cheese, chopped onion or scallion, hot sauce, and/or sour cream.

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