Do you know what I hate? That second grocery store trip that has to be made because you forgot one or two things on your list and can’t seem to make due with out them. You are all excited to make something for dinner, start pulling things out of the cupboards, opening, chopping, rinsing, and then all of a sudden it strikes- NO! I’m out of _____. It’s the worst! Especially if you don’t have a market near by, which thankfully I do, but it’s terribly expensive (damn their convenience!).
At any rate I was having one of these moments last week and decided it wasn’t worth the time and intrusion in the day to run out for said ingredient(s). Instead I looked at what I was making, opened the cupboards back up and got inventive. A little splash of honey, some sriracha (my usual additives) some cumin, adobo, chili powder and chipotle spice…bubble bubble toil and trouble… things started looking up.
On top of having mysteriously misplaced some much needed groceries, and by “mysteriously misplaced” I mean forgot to purchase entirely, Drew and I had been having a doozy of a week. I was dealing with the usual dark and twisty spiral of the “life meaning” battle and Drew was fighting the dark and twisty spiral of too much work in too little time (ah holidays how wonderful and terrible you are!). We were both longing for comfort and needed something to help us out of our ruts. And being who I am, making food that is comforting for the soul always helps me feel better.
My original intent was to make… to be honest I don’t even remember… but what ended up being conjured was an ever evolving taco soup. Out came my giant soup pot, cans and cans of beans, chicken stock, spices, and fresh veggies. The smell was warm, filled with spice, wrapping us in a blanket of aroma. The house felt calm and comforted as the pot steeped on the stove.
-Ever Evolving Taco Soup-
What you will need (I chose to use all organic ingredients… no pressure I won’t judge you if you don’t do the same):
2 Bell Peppers Chopped (I used half a red, half a yellow, and an orange bell pepper)
1 Small Sweet Onion
1 Can Black Beans
1 Can Kidney Beans
1 Can Pinto Beans
1 Can Refried Black Beans
1 Can Cannellini Beans
2 14.5 oz Cans Diced Tomatos with Green Chilis
1 TBSP Olive Oil
32 oz Organic Chicken Broth (Or Vegetable Stock)
1 packet Taco Seasoning OR 1 TBSP Cumin, 1 TBSP Adobo, 1 Tsp Garlic Powder, 1 Tsp Chipotle Spice, 1 Tsp Sea Salt (give or take a little, I usually just add to taste)
Optional (but recommended)
2-3 TBSP Honey
2-3 TBSP Sriracha
1-2 TBSP Valentina
Garnish if desired with fresh Avocado, Cilantro, and fresh squeezed Lime.
In a large pot Saute your chopped Peppers and Onion until soft and onion is slightly translucent.
Add in Chicken Broth, Beans (all of them), Tomatos, and Seasoning (including the honey and hot sauce). Stir.
Allow to simmer for 1-3 hours on low heat.
The flavors will steep into each creating a sweet spice that is divine.
When I made this soup we were a little over eager and didn’t allow it to simmer long enough, making the first bites a little lack luster. It was good, don’t get me wrong but it was missing that one thing that would make the spices sing. That is where the evolution came in. Adding the honey and hot sauce and allowing the soup to simmer together made the flavor beyond beliefe.
I accompanied the dish with a freshly baked batch of Gluten Free Cornbread that is soft, buttery, and delicious. However, it is also wonderful with tortilla strips or chips for dipping and adding a little crunch into each bite.
Happy post Thanksgiving everyone! I hope you had the most wonderful holiday filled with the most wonderful food and people… or rather, I hope you survived family accosting you on all things life, love, and elections. And while, by this point, I am sure you are all sick of food, I promise this recipe is well worth it; so even if you don’t make it now, save it for a rainy day when you need a warm comforting bowl of soup.
Cheers, snuggle up, stay warm, and enjoy.