Best Black Bean Soup (NYT)

  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 2 carrots, peeled and chopped
  • 2 onions, peeled and chopped
  • 4 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1 cup red wine
  • jalapeño pepper, seeded and chopped
  • 1 pound dry black beans
  • 2 quarts mild vegetable or chicken stock
  • 1 tablespoon dried oregano, preferably Mexican
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 1 tablespoon kosher salt
  • 1 T ground cumin
  • 1 T ground coriander
  • 1 teaspoon ground black pepper
  •  Red wine vinegar, to taste

possible garnishes

  • 1 small red onion, peeled and thinly sliced
  •  Freshly squeezed juice of 2 limes
  •  Salt
  •  Sour cream or cheve
  •  Whole cilantro leaves
  •  Sliced avocado
  1. soak black beans the day before cooking the soup
  2. In a large, heavy pot, heat olive oil over medium heat until shimmering. Add carrots, onions and garlic and cook, stirring, until softened but not browned, 5 to 8 minutes.
  3. Pour in wine and let simmer until pan is almost dry and vegetables are coated. This can take approximately 15 minutes Add chopped jalapeño and cook, stirring, just until softened, 2 minutes.
  4. Add rinsed beans, stock, oregano and bay leaves and ground cumin and coriander, salt and pepper. Stir, bring to a boil, and let boil 10 to 15 minutes. Reduce the heat to a simmer and cook, partly covered, stirring occasionally and adding hot water as needed to keep the soup liquid and runny, not sludgy. Continue cooking until beans are just softened and fragrant, 1 to 2 hours.
  5. Adjust the texture of the soup: The goal is to combine whole beans, soft chunks and a velvety broth. Some beans release enough starch while cooking to produce a thick broth without puréeing. If soup seems thin, use an immersion blender or blender to purée a small amount of the beans until smooth. Continue until desired texture is reached, keeping in mind that the soup will continue to thicken as it sits. Add red wine vinegar to taste. 2 T seemed just fine.

When serving top with garnish.

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Vanilla Chiffon Cake (from 4/97 Bon Appetit)

1 ½ cups sugar

½ cup matzo cake meal

½ cup potato starch

1 ½ vanilla beans

½ t K salt

7 large eggs separated

2 T canola oil

2 T brandy

Preheat oven to 350.

Blend ½ cup sugar, matzo cake meal, potato starch, vanilla beans and salt in food processor until beans are finely chopped.  Sift mixture into small bowl.  Discard remains of beans that have not been sifted.

Using electric mixture, beat egg whites in large bowl until medium firm peaks form.  Gradually add 3/4 cup sugar, beating until stiff but not dry.

With same beaters (or with another mixer) beat the yolks and ¼ cup of sugar until thick (about 5 minutes).  Gradually beat in the oil, then brandy.  Beat in matzo meal mixture.

Fold in whites in three additions.

Transfer batter to ungreased 10” tube pan with removeable bottom.   Bake until tester inserted near center comes out clean  (about 37 minute)  Immediately invert center of tube pan onto a narrow necked bottle.   Cool completely.  (Can make a day ahead.  Cover cake in pan.) Cut around pan sides to loosen cake.

Great served with strawberry sauce

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Aunt Ruth’s Chocolate Roll

5 eggs separated

½ cup confectionary sugar

2 T cocoa

Beat egg whites until stiff

Beat yolks and sugar for 10 minutes.  Fold in cocoa and stiffly beaten egg whites

Grease very well and flour 10 x 15 rimmed cookie sheet

Pour and spread egg mixture onto cookie sheet

Bake at  400 10-15 minutes (gets slightly browned and tooth pick comes out clean when inserted ) and turn out while hot onto thin slightly damp kitchen towel sprinkled with sugar, Roll towel inside cake and cool immediately in fridge for a couple of hours before unrolling.

Spread with whipped cream using about ONE and 1/2 cups heavy cream, about 1/2 T confectionary sugar and 1/2 tea vanilla (should not be too sweet) then roll again.  Cover with fudge frosting

For frosting, use 2 cups sifted confectionary sugar, 3 squares chocolate melted in about 2 TBLE butter

Add to frosting 1/2 tea vanilla and a bit of lemon juice

Add milk, tablespoon at a time till you get the right consistency

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Chicken Piccata

4 boneless skinless chicken breasts..about 1 1/2 pounds halved horizontally (freezing the chicken breasts for 15 minutes will make slicing them through the middle easier)

6 T unsalted butter (although I used less and it was fine)

3 T olive oil

1 shallot peeled and sliced lengthwise

1 lemon, halved (half thinly sliced (or zest) and seeds removed; half juiced about 2T)

3/4 C chicken stock

4 t drained capers

  1. Dry chicken and then season both sides of the chicken with salt and pepper. Dredge the chicken in flour and shake off any excess.
  2. In large skillet, heat 3 T (I use 2) and olive oil over medium heat until butter melts. Working in batches to avoid crowding the pan, add the chicken and saute until golden brown and cooked through about 3 minutes on each side, depending on thickness (safe to check)
  3. Remove the chicken, place on a plate and repeat with remaining pieces, adding more oil if needed.
  4. Once the chicken is cooked, add the shallot and lemon slices to the pan and saute, stirring occasionally, until lightly caramelized and fragrant, 2 to 3 minutes. Add the stock and simmer until reduced by half, about 3 minutes.
  5. Reduce the heat to low, then stir in the remaining butter, capers and lemon juice, to taste. Season with salt and pepper to taste ( didn’t bother). Serve the chicken with the sauce poured over the top. Garnish with parsley if desired.
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Kunde is a Swahili word for black-eyed peas. Ladle this Kenyan staple over rice and pair it with sauteed leafy greens for a fast, affordable, nutritious vegan meal.

Serves 4-6

3 T creamy peanut butter

2 T canola oil

1 yellow onion finely chopped

1 t ground coriander

1 t ground turmeric

1 large tomato finely chopped

Kosher salt

2 (15 1/2 oz ) cans black-eyed peas, drained and rinsed.

1/2 cup water

warm oil in a medium saucepan over medium heat. Add onions and cook, stirring until they begin to soften, about 5 minutes. Add spices and cook, stirring until fragrant, about 30 seconds. Add tomatoes and large pinch of salt and cook, stirring occasionally, until liquid evaporates and mixture is quite dry, about five minutes.

Add peas, peanut butter and water, increase heat to high and bring to a boil.

Reduce heat to low and simmer until peas absorb some flavor, about 5 minutes. Season to taste with salt and serve immediately.

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