From the kitchen of One Perfect Bite...Soup may seem a strange choice for a summer meal, but it can be warm and refreshing after day on the water. My family is not a great fan of chili in the summer, but they do like this Southwestern-style bean soup that is similar to it in taste. The recipe is straight forward and the soup is simple to make. It can also be stretched to feed unexpected guests with the addition of another can of beans and a couple cups of stock. The soup is a good keeper, but be forewarned, it thickens as it sits and you'll need additional stock to reheat it. This is not a recipe that will enhance your reputation as a cook, but neither will it harm it. Served with cornbread and a salad, it makes a fast and filling meal at any time of year. Your family will love it for its flavor. You will love it for the ease with which it comes together. Here is how the soup is made.
Southwestern Bean Soup...from the kitchen of One Perfect Bite
1 tablespoon vegetable oil
1 medium onion, diced
1 green bell pepper, diced
1 jalapeno, minced
1 large carrot, diced
1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
1 tablespoon chili powder
1 teaspoon cumin
1/2 teaspoon oregano
1 tablespoon minced garlic
1 (15-oz.) can diced tomatoes, drained
1 (15-oz.) can small red beans, drained
1 cup frozen shoe peg corn
1 cup diced raw potato
4 cups reduced sodium chicken broth
1 teaspoon kosher salt
2 cups diced cook chicken
Juice of 1 lime
1 tablespoon brown sugar
1 cup grated Monterey or pepper jack cheese
1/2 cup sour cream
1) Heat vegetable oil in a dutch oven over medium-high heat until shimmering, then add onion, both peppers, carrots and sprinkle with the 1/2 teaspoon salt. Saute until softened, about 5 minutes. Make a hole in center of pan and add garlic, chili powder, cumin and oregano. Toast for 30 seconds to 1 minute, or until garlic is fragrant. Stir vegetables with spices and saute for another 1-2 minutes or until vegetables start to brown.
2) Add tomatoes, beans, corn, potatoes, salt and chicken broth to pot. Turn heat to high and bring to a boil, then boil for 1 minute. Reduce heat and simmer, add chicken, and simmer for 10 minutes to allow the flavors to mingle and potatoes to cook. Add lime juice and brown sugar, then adjust seasoning to taste with additional salt and pepper.
3) Ladle into soup bowls and top with cheese, sour cream and cilantro. Yield: 6 servings.
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