Mexican Black Bean Soup


1 pound dried black beans
2 1/2 quarts water
1 pound ham (I have made this without the ham and it is still good)
2 stalks celery, chopped
2 cloves of garlic, mashed
2 large onions, chopped
i cup shredded potatoes
1 Pkg frozen corn kernals
3 or 4 chipotles in adobo, minced (to taste)
1/2 teaspoon ground allspice
1 teaspoon black pepper
1 Tablespoon beef base or 3 bouillon cubes
1 8 ounce can tomato sauce
1/2 cup dry red wine, or 3 Tablespoons lemon juice
sour cream chopped cilantro and diced onion for garnish

Rinse and sort the beans, place with the water in a 5-quart pan and soak overnight, or bring to a boil, boil 2 minutes then cover and set aside for an hour. Add the ham in one or several pieces, celery, garlic, onions, salt to taste, allspice and beef stock base. Cover and simmer for 2 to 3 hours, or until the beans are soft. Remove the ham and set aside, then stir in the tomato sauce, chipotles and wine. Whirl part of the soup at a time in a blender or food processor (I don't process all of the beans, only about half of them). Return to the pan with corn and potatoes, dice the ham and return to the soup. Check the seasonings. Reheat the soup to boiling and serve with garnishes.
Serves 8-10.


Laurie in DC

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