Sometimes recipes are developed over time, after many failures and "close, but not there yet" attempts. I made this Black Bean Soup to accompany Crab Tostadas, and it was Eureka! at first taste.
The ingredient list is quite short, but a few key ingredients were all it took to turn a single can of whole black beans into something restaurant-worthy. <-- Jim's words, not mine.
Olive Oil (I like California Olive Ranch evoo)
1 yellow onion, small diced
1 stalk celery, small diced
2 garlic cloves, minced
1 can whole black beans, drained (not rinsed)
1/2 cup chopped tomatoes (either fresh or canned diced like Rotel)
1 teaspoon cumin
Chicken stock (I like Better Than Bouillon Roasted Chicken paste mixed with water. You could use Vegetable Bouillon to make this vegetarian)
Kosher salt and pepper
Greek yogurt (or sour cream for serving)
In a small saucepan over medium heat, add a tablespoon of oil, onion, and celery. Saute until onion is translucent and just begins to brown in spots.
Add garlic and stir for 30 seconds. Add black beans, tomatoes, cumin, and stock. Bring to a rolling boil, then reduce to low and simmer for 10 minutes.
Using the tines of a fork, mash 1/3 of the black beans against the inside of the saucepan. Stir and add more stock as needed to get the consistency you prefer.
Taste and add fresh lime juice, salt, and pepper as needed. Serve with a dollop of Greek yogurt, sour cream, sliced green onion, or avocado.