A Cuban Black Bean Soup that Features “the Food of the Gods”

Cooler fall temps have us hankering for hearty dishes, like the black bean soup featured here. It hails from Cuba, where many locals consider black beans to be “the food of the gods.” (Click here to see the recipe.) Why are black beans thought to be the food of the gods in Cuba? “One taste of this recipe and you’ll see why,” Ana Quincocess writes in her Cuban cookbook Sabor (Running Press, 2012), where the recipe appears.

Black bean soup, it turns out, is taken pretty seriously in Cuba. “You will find a recipe for black bean soup in every Cuban cookbook. It’s mandatory. I’m not kidding,” Quincocess half jokes. “I actually think there is some kind of publishing law that requires it.”

In her version, the water used to soak the dried black beans becomes the liquid for the soup – along with dry white wine. Before the liquids are added, onions, garlic and green bell pepper are sautéed in olive oil. (Our Everyday Fresh extra virgin olive oil would be good.)

Tomato paste, a bay leaf, cumin, and dried oregano are added, followed by the beans, the soaking liquid mixture, the wine, red wine vinegar, and a little sugar.

The soup is simmered for 3 to 3-1/2 hours until the beans are tender and the stock has thickened. “The stock will thicken as the beans cool to room temperature,” Quincocess advises. (Click here to see the recipe.)

She suggests serving the soup over long-grain white rice.

You can find other recipes for global cuisine – including hearty dishes for fall – in the October issue of our eNewsletter. (Click here to see the eNews.)

Bon appétit,

Your friends at California Olive Ranch