Thanks Janssen for recommending this great recipe from It's So Tasty Too. We left out the leeks because WHAT are they anyways? Other than that I followed the recipe and loved it, especially with the lime sour cream. Yum! We served with cornbread and an awesome salad that Katie brought and that I will try to obtain the recipe for ASAP!
The other good news about this soup is that I actually did the whole "soak beans overnight" business. I was so darn proud. And in the interest of my arteries I drained about half of the bacon drippings (because dang I had a LOT of bacon drippings), still tasted wonderful!
1 (16 oz.) package dried black beans (about 2 1/2 cups) or 5 cans (15 oz.) black beans
1 lb. bacon, chopped
3/4 cup finely chopped celery
3/4 cup finely chopped onion
3/4 cup finely chopped carrots
3/4 cup finely chopped leeks
6 cups canned chicken broth
1 large tomato, chopped
1 cup fresh cilantro, chopped
1/4 cup chopped fresh parsley
1 1/2 tablespoons garlic, minced
1 jalapeno chili, minced, seeds removed
1 tablespoon red wine vinegar (I used sherry)
2 teaspoons ground cumin
Cilantro-Lime Sour Cream:
3/4 cup sour cream
2 teaspoons fresh lemon juice
2 teaspoons fresh lime juice
1/4 cup chopped fresh cilantro
Place beans in a large bowl. Add enough water to cover by 3 inches. Let stand overnight. Drain and rinse well. Cook bacon in heavy large pot over medium heat until done, about 8 minutes. Do not drain drippings. Add beans, chicken broth, tomato, cilantro, parsley, garlic, jalapeno, sherry or vinegar and cumin. Bring to boil. Reduce heat to medium-low, cover and simmer soup until beans are very tender, stirring occasionally, about 2 hours.
(If you use canned beans, which is perfectly fine!, then just simmer for an hour.)
If you have an immersion blender, process until slightly chunky puree forms. Return soup to pot. Season to taste with salt and pepper. (If you don't have an immersion blender, for Heaven's sake, go out and treat yourself to one - they are amazing! In the meantime, working in batches, transfer soup to a blender and process until slightly chunky and pureed.) Ladle soup into bowls. Place dollop of sour cream mixture atop soup.