The winter chills are definitely here in Sydney at the moment, and in this sort of weather I enjoy a bowl of soup to warm me from the inside.
The flavours of this soup are inspired by Mexican influences, but I don’t claim that this is authentically Mexican. A lot of the “Mexican” we are familiar with in Australia like nachos is actually Tex-Mex, American with Mexican influences that originated from the southern states of the US. You could use a Mexican chilli like a jalapeño in the soup or as a garnish.
How to Roast Capsicums
Red capsicums give the best flavour after roasting, you can roast green, yellow or orange capsicums but I prefer the flavour of the red capsicums.
Place your red capsicums on a baking tray and place into a 200°C oven. Cook until the skins blacken and blister. Once the skins are blackened, remove the capsicums from the oven and place in a heat-proof bowl, cover with plastic-wrap and allow to cool [this allows the capsicums to sweat and makes the skin easier to peel off]. When the capsicums are cool enough to handle, peel off the skin, and discard the stalk, inside core and seeds. Reserve any liquid that may be inside – I tend to do this separation procedure over a sieve to capture the liquid without any seeds otherwise I find I am there all day fishing out seeds.
Spicy Bean Soup
- 1 litre of tomato based vegetable juice
- 2 red capsicums, roasted, skins and seeds removed
- 2 x 400g tins of red kidney beans
- 2 tablespoons oil
- 1 red onion, finely diced
- 1 stick of celery, finely diced
- 1 teaspoon dried oregano
- 1 teaspoon cumin seeds, toasted and ground
- 1 teaspoon coriander seeds, toasted and ground
- 1 tablespoon smoked paprika
- 3 chillies [or more, to taste]
- 2 bay leaves
- 1 lime, juiced
- 2 cloves garlic, crushed
- Sour cream, to serve
- Chopped parsley or coriander, to serve
- Heat the oil in a large pan, add the onion and celery and cook until the onion is soft.
- Add the ground cumin & coriander, oregano, paprika, garlic and chillies and cook for a minute or two. Remove from the heat.
- Drain one tin of kidney beans, rinse and put the beans into a blender jug. Add the roast capsicums and any capsicum juice you may have to the blender. Add the onion spice mix to the blender and approximately half of the juice. Blend until smooth.
- Transfer the blended liquid back to the pan, add the remaining juice and bay leaves.
- Drain the remaining tin of kidney beans, rinse and add to the pan.
- Heat the soup until bubbling, stirring occasionally to ensure nothing sticks to the bottom of the pan.
- Add the lime juice, give everything a final stir and remove from the heat. Remove the bay leaves.
- Serve the soup with a dollop of sour cream and some chopped parsley or coriander. Enjoy.
What recipes do you like to cook to help keep you warm in the colder weather? Has this post inspired any new ideas?