Black Beans of Despair

black beans of despair

Another simple one. Perhaps too simple. The occasional failure helps the successes shine more brightly. Here’s to the other soups. This recipe is based on a Bon Appetit black bean soup that looked just lovely. I changed out a few ingredients and elected to soak the beans overnight rather than slow cook the whole thing.

So I figure once cooking, 2 maybe 3 hours. Plenty of time for a trip to the ol’ Tractor Supply. Still plenty of time. I swing by the brother’s for a little Wii Golf. Now it’s closing in on the three hour mark. Those beans should be nice and tender.

Sadly, three hours was way past whatever was supposed to happen there. Everything droopy. Dishwater gray. I can’t even bring myself to puree.

I present this photo and recipe only for sake of posterity. I cannot vouch for what could have been. Live in hope, die in despair.

ADDENDUM: So check *this* out. I sit down at the computer this evening to record this sad little chapter and my RSS reports a new entry at my friend Coco’s Soupruary Blog. She is the originator of this month long celebration of soup and is an inspiring soup mistress. Well, it turns out not only did Coco make black bean soup to great success, she made hers from virtually the same recipe! Not exactly the same, but close. Hers was the Bon Appetit recipe, but filtered through the always awesome smitten kitchen blog.

Here’s something smitten kitchen had to say about the recipe:

“A big note about cooking times: The original recipe says 6 hours. Mine were done at 2 hours 45 minutes. Do black beans vary wildly in cooking time? Do slow cookers vary wildly in cooking time? These are all pressing questions. Check your beans at 3 hours, and holler at me in the comments if your cooking time ends up being much longer.”

Soaking your beans roughty cuts cooking time in half, which means I should have been looking at maybe 90 minutes.



2 cups dried black beans

1 tbsp olive oil

2 red onions, chopped

2 bell peppers, chopped

1 ancho pepper, seeded and chopped

1 tbsp chopped chipotle

3 cloves garlic, minced

4 tsp cumin

7 cups water

2 tsp kosher salt

1/4 tsp black pepper

juice of one lime


Soak beans overnight. Rinse before cooking.

In a large saucepan, saute onions, pepper, and garlic in olive oil 10 minutes (until soft). Stir in spices.

Add beans to saute and cook at med-low heat until beans are tender. Possibly 90 minutes.

Partially puree using immersion blender.

Add lime juice, salt, pepper and serve. Garnish with sour cream.

Originally: Black Beans of Despair

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