Savory Black Bean & Sausage Soup


Contributed By Helen Chin Lui, Owner of The Healing Place
Nothing like a pot of hot soup on cold and snowy days! From my kitchen to yours.
Prep Time:30 minutes
Cooking Time:30-90 minutes
Serves:12 people easily

Soups are wonderful and they really don’t take a lot of time to make; most of the time is the actual cooking time. Most soups really do not require a recipe, just an inventory of what you have on hand and a little imagination. The base for all soups is a stock (chicken or beef or vegetable), celery, onion and carrots. Once you have your stock base, you can add just about anything. Feel free to add or subtract any ingredient to this recipe. Recipe can be halved.

Ingredients

2 16 oz cans of black beans*
2 16 oz cans of corn, drained, or 3 C frozen corn, or the kernels from 3 medium fresh ears of corn
6-8 links of either mild or hot pre-cooked chicken sausages, or vegetarian sausages
2 large stalks of celery, including leaves, chopped
1 medium onion, chopped
3 large or 4 medium carrots, peeled and sliced, or 4 oz (or half bag) baby carrots
10 C pre-made soup stock, chicken or vegetable **
5 C water
1 small bunch kale, washed and chopped, or ¼ 16 oz bag of chopped kale
1 8 oz can chopped tomato
1/3 C fresh cilantro, chopped
1-2 t of chili powder
1 t cumin powder
4-5 cloves garlic, chopped
1 t salt (omit salt if using sausages)
1 t ground black pepper
**You can also use other beans, such as red, cannelloni or navy. If you’d like to start with a bag of dried beans, use 1 16 oz bag of dry black beans, soaked overnight.
** To make homemade chicken stock, place 12 C water in a large soup pot with a 4-5 lb chicken (to eliminate fat, I take the skin off the chicken prior to putting it into the pot.) Bring to a boil, and then reduce heat to a simmer over low heat for 45-60 minutes.  Strain the stock into a bowl, cover, and let cool. Once cool place in the refrigerator. Fat will rise to the top of the cooled broth.  Remove the fat before using. The chicken meat from your stock can be used for another recipe, or add some to your soup.

Directions:

In a large stockpot, add beans, corn, sausage, celery, onion, carrots, stock, water, kale, tomato, cilantro, chili powder, cumin powder, garlic, salt and pepper. If you feel there is not enough liquid in the pot add an additional cup of stock or water.  Bring the contents of the pot to a boil over high heat.  Skim any form that comes to the surface and dispose. Turn heat down to low and simmer, covered for about 30-40 minutes. If you are using canned beans, cooking time is about 30 minutes. If you use dry beans, increase cooking time by another 30 minutes (60 minutes total.) Sample the soup to test for doneness.
For a little more bulk you may top soup with either white or brown rice. Once plated, you may also add more cilantro, and if you choose, some sliced avocado.

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