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Black Bean and Corn Soup

I love bean soups. As a vegan, I find that they are a delicious way to get the protein I need in life. They also freeze well, making life easier. This one is a little spicy so it’s strengthening and good for circulation, as well as being a good source of protein, folate, and fiber, low in fat and beneficial to digestion (because they contain compounds including that butyric acid, which aids in the digestion of protein).

Ingredients
Avocado Oil 
3–4 cloves fresh garlic, minced
1 jalapeño pepper, minced, seeds and spine included
1 red onion, diced
Sea salt
1 stalk celery, diced
1 medium carrot, diced
1 zucchini, diced
2 ripe plum tomatoes, diced, with their seeds do not seed
1 cup dried black turtle beans
4 cups spring or filtered water
1 bay leaf
½ cup fresh or frozen organic corn kernels
1 cup vegan sour cream (optional)*
2–3 sprigs fresh flat-leaf parsley or cilantro, coarsely chopped, for garnish


Directions 
Place a small amount of oil, garlic, jalapeño, and onion in a soup pot over medium heat. When the onion begins to sizzle, add a pinch of salt and sauté for 2–3 minutes. Stir in celery and a pinch of salt and sauté for 1 minute. Stir in carrot and, a pinch of salt and sauté for 1 minute. 

Stir in zucchini and, a pinch of salt and sauté for 1 minute. Stir in tomatoes and beans. Add water and bay leaf; cover and bring to a boil. Reduce heat to low and cook for about an hour or until the beans are soft. Stir in corn and season soup to taste with salt. Simmer for 5 minutes more. To serve, ladle soup into individual bowls with a dollop of “sour cream” on top and a sprinkle of parsley or cilantro. 

Note You can use canned organic beans (rinsed and drained) and shorten the cooking time of this soup to 30 minutes. *Vegan sour cream can be purchased in most natural food stores. You may also make your own by pureeing 1 cup silken tofu with a pinch of salt and the juice of ¼ fresh lemon.

Makes 4–5 servings


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