Freezer Friendly Spicy Black Bean Soup — Cooking Forward Part II
This recipe is a great example of Cooking Forward, one of my favorite techniques in which tonight’s meal gets transformed into something entirely different tomorrow. Since this recipe is Part II, it’s tomorrow (meaning you will have already have to have made Part I, Carnitas, before you will be able to make this soup from the leftover cooking liquid. Go ahead, click on the Carnitas link and make that first, we’ll wait. Then come back here to make this wonderful hearty soup! (Read more about Cooking Forward in general here.)
Makes 12 Cups
8 slices thick cut bacon, diced
2 large onions, diced
2 jalapeno peppers (more to taste), cored, seeded and minced
2 large celery ribs, finely chopped
2 large carrots, peeled and finely chopped
1 tablespoon minced garlic
2-3 chipotle chiles in adobo sauce (more to taste)
6 cups cooked black beans (1 pound dried beans, prepared)
10 cups pork stock from cooking Carnitas
2 teaspoons dried thyme
2 teaspoons dried oregano
1 teaspoon dried cumin
2 bay leaves
1/2 cup loosely packed chopped cilantro
salt and pepper to taste
Heat a large pot over medium-high heat and add bacon Cook bacon, stirring occasionally, until beginning to brown, about 5 minutes. Add jalapenos, celery, and carrots and cook, stirring occasionally, for another 5 minutes. Add garlic and chipotles in adobo sauce and cook for another minute before adding beans and pork stock. Bring to a boil, reduce heat to low, stir in thyme, oregano, cumin and bay leaves. Simmer, partially covered, for about 45 minutes. Stir in cilantro and season to taste with salt and pepper.
Cool soup completely. Portion in packages that meet your family’s needs in zip-top plastic storage bags or lidded freeze containers and freeze. Reheat frozen or thawed soup in the microwave or in a pot on the stovetop over medium heat.
If you own my book The Complete Idiot’s Guide to Easy Freezer Meals (2011 Alpha Books), you will find a recipe for Posole, Mexican Pork and Hominy Stew. It makes another perfect way to use the tasty pork stock created when making Carnitas.