A few years ago, my mom and sister were suffering from an extreme bout of seasonal allergies. The day was full of sniffling, mouth-breathing, and shivering. They were too fatigued to get up and fix a snack, so I was recruited to make dinner that night. They wanted something warm to ward off the shivers and something spicy to clear up their sinuses. The family was gluten-free at the time, so my options were limited.
I rushed out to the store and started throwing the bare necessities in my cart. Vegetables were the first priority. Protein was a necessity, so I grabbed a few cans of black beans. I had two sick patients snuggled up on the couch and surrounded by nasty tissues and cough drops, so I had to hurry. Their sad puppy-dog eyes and red faces seemed to command sympathy.
Start the Soup
Gather your ingredients. You have the freedom to add as much spice as you want. My mother enjoys Sriracha sauce in hers, and I like adding a bit more cumin in mine. Go nuts!
- 3 Large Tomatoes
- 3 Shots Tequila
- 3 Bell Peppers (any colors)
- Carrots (as much as you want)
- Celery (as much as you want)
- 1 Jalapeño
- 1 Clove Garlic
- Small Onion
- 3 Cups Vegetable Stock
- 3 16oz cans Black Beans
- 2 tsp. Cayenne Pepper
- 2 tsp. Cumin
- 1 tbsp. of Salt
- Lime Juice
- Handful of Cilantro
- Avocado (as many as you want)
- Sour Cream
Break Out the Tequila!
As promised, this is another recipe to use up that extra tequila. We had some in the cabinet and I’m the only one who drinks it, so I thought, “Why the heck not?” and poured some in the pot with the simmering tomato bits.
Start the Soup
- Chop tomatoes, bell peppers, carrots, jalapeño (with seeds for more spice), garlic, and onion.
- Pour vegetable stock and tequila into a large pot and add chopped vegetables. Cover pot and set over medium flame and stir occasionally as it comes to a boil.
- While allowing the soup to simmer in the covered pot for 10 minutes, open the 3 cans of black beans, drain, and rinse them slightly.
- After the first 10-minute simmer, add in the black beans, cayenne pepper, cumin, and salt to taste.
- While bringing the soup back to a boil in the covered pot, chop up the cilantro, and add it to the soup.
- Allow the soup to simmer again in the covered pot for 10 minutes, adding lime juice to taste (start with the juice of 1/4 of the lime).
- After the final simmer, remove from heat, and serve. Consider the following:
This soup can be garnished with a lime wedge for decoration, slices of fresh avocado, sour cream or any kind of your favorite cheese cheese (which would make the soup no longer fat free). For extra protein, add shredded chicken.
To make the soup into chili, add shredded chicken or ground beef.
To make a fun party dip, omit the vegetable broth to make it thicker, puree the soup and serve it hot with your favorite chips.
There you have it. A lovely soup, chili, or dip to warm your belly. Let me know how this recipe works for you and what changes you made. It’s always interesting to see what else someone might toss into the pot. Leave a comment! I look forward to hearing from you all.