My cousin Jean who is like a brother to me, took me to Colorado one year for my birthday. We had the best dinner at a restaurant whose name for the life of me I can’t remember! I had a spicy black bean soup that blew my mind. Ever since then I have been working on this recipe. It’s takes a little planning if you are going to make it from dried black beans, but it’s well worth it!
2 cups of dried black beans -soaked overnight or 8 hours or 3, 15 oz cans
2 Pasilla chilies or pueblano
2 green bell peppers 1 for roasting, 1 for soup (diced)
1 jalapeno- optional makes the soup spicy
1 ½ red onions, 1/2 for roasting, 1 raw diced for soup
1/2 head of garlic + 3 pieces smashed
1 cup of chopped cilantro
3 Bay leaves
1 chipotle chili chopped- I use chipotle in adobo but a dried chili would be good too.
2 tsp cumin
1/4 tsp smoked Spanish paprika
1/4 tsp chili powder
1/2 tbs coarse sea salt
2 tbs olive oil + 1 tsp
6 cups of water
1/2 lb of pepper jack cheese- coarsely shredded
12 good or homemade tortillas (6 quesadillas)
Pre heat broiler.
In a stock pot or dutch oven heat 1 tbs of olive oil. When hot, add diced red onion, green bell pepper, chipotle, smashed garlic, bay leaves, salt and pepper, cumin, paprika, and chili powder. Sauté on a medium heat until the onions and bell peppers are soft, about 8 minutes. Add the soaked black beans with 6 cups of water and 1/2 cup of cilantro. Cook on a medium low heat for about 1 hour until the beans are cooked.
While the soup is cooking place the pasilla chilies, jalapeno, onion, green bell pepper and 1/2 head of garlic on a roasting pan and place under the broiler. Broil vegetables on all sides until the skin is blackened not charred, about 5-7 minutes on each side. After roasting, remove from the broiler and let cool in a covered glass dish. When cooled remove skins, stems and seeds from the peppers, slice them in long thin strips, take 1/2 and set aside for the quesadillas. Dice the other 1/2. Dice the onion. Reserve for quesadilla. Remove the garlic from the skins and chop. Reserve 1 tsp for quesadillas.
Add the pepper & garlic mixture & 1/4 cup of cilantro to the soup, cook for another 15 minutes on a low heat.
Take the reserved pastilla chili, green bell peppers, onions & 1 tsp of garlic and combine in a bowl with 3 tbs of cilantro, 1 tsp olive oil & salt to taste.
Using a hand blender, blend the soup until it’s almost puréed, leaving some chunks. Serve with a dollop of crème fraiche or sour cream and fresh cilantro.
Heat a grill pan on a high heat until screamin hot! Cook the tortillas on both
sides working in batches. I can do 4 at a time on my grill pan. When the tortillas have grill marks on both sides, add a small handful of cheese on 2 tortillas, and a spoon full of the chili onion mixture. Cover with the other tortilla. Cook the quesadillas until the cheese is melted. Cut in quarters. Serve one whole quesadilla per person with the soup. Serves 6