This is basically a two-can soup (can of beans/can of tomatoes), but it’s got a deep rich flavor, and a lovely, deeply richly colored broth (black bean soups can be so drab-looking sometimes, but this has a warm mahogany hue). Simply made, but complexly flavored.
Here’s JJ Allstar’s Soup. I found a surprising number of songs about soup. Can you think of any that you like?
one can of black beans
one can of chopped tomatoes (I like fire-roasted)
1 medium shallot – fine dice
1 large clove of garlic – fine dice
2 T tomato paste
1 cup beer
1 T Brown sugar
2t. smoked paprika (no I don’t put this in everything!)
1 t. ground mustard
2 t. oregano
1/2 t. sage
cayenne to taste
1 t. marmite
1 t. tamarind paste (if you have it!)
water or broth
dollop of butter/dash of balsamic
1. Warm the olive oil (enough to cover the bottom of the pan) over medium heat. Add the shallots, when they begin to brown, add the garlic. Add the tomato paste, marmite, tamarind (this adds a hint of tartness, but if you don’t have it, that’s fine, too!), Brown sugar, mustard, paprika, cayenne, oregano, sage, allspice. Stir it all up to a nice paste. (You might need to take it off the burner while you add all these things, because you don’t want any of it to burn and turn bitter.
2. Rinse and drain the beans – add them to the pot. Add the can of tomatoes to the pot. (You could use fresh tomatoes as well, roughly chopped.) Mix and let the mixture cook a few minutes to warm through and thicken.
4. Cook for about 15 minutes to warm it through and mingle all the flavors. Add a dollop of butter, a dash of balsamic, and salt and ground pepper to taste. If you have it on hand, a tablespoon or two of sofrito, stirred in at the end, really deepens the flavors.