Black bean soup with avocado salsa

Black bean soup with avocado salsa

Cooking time
105 mins
Deidre Rooney

This offers a real taste of Mexico. Black beans are very earthy and can take a strongly flavoured stock such as ham hock – be prepared to add more than specified to get the consistency you want.

From the grocer


Quantity Ingredient
275g dried black beans, soaked overnight
60ml olive oil
2 teaspoons cumin seeds
1.5 litres vegetable or chicken stock
salt and freshly ground black pepper
1 teaspoon ground cumin
80ml extra-virgin olive oil
tabasco sauce, to taste
sour cream, to taste

From the greengrocer

Quantity Ingredient
1 large onion, finely chopped
1 carrot, chopped
1 celery stalk, finely chopped, plus leaves
3 tablespoons coriander leaves, chopped, plus stems from 15 g coriander
1 medium red chilli, seeded and chopped
5 garlic cloves
1 lime, juice
200g ripe tomatoes, diced
2 avocados, stoned, flesh diced
2 spring onions, trimmed and finely chopped


  1. To make the soup, drain the beans and rinse. Heat the olive oil in a heavy-based saucepan and cook the onion, carrot, celery, coriander stems and chilli over a medium heat until pale gold. Stir, then add about 80 ml water and cover. Leave everything to sweat for about 15 minutes – the vegetables should be quite soft by this stage.
  2. Meanwhile, toast the cumin seeds in a small dry frying pan over a medium heat until fragrant, taking care not to burn them. Grind in a mortar, then transfer to the cooked vegetables with 3 of the garlic cloves (chopped). Cook the vegetables for another 2 minutes and then add the beans and stock. Bring to the boil, reduce the heat and simmer for about 1 hour 30 minutes. The beans should be completely tender. Season and leave to cool completely.
  3. Transfer the beans and about 1 litre of the cooking liquid to a blender or food processor and purée. Add more liquid if necessary to get the consistency you want. Add half the lime juice and check the seasoning as beans always need plenty of salt and pepper.
  4. Mix together the tomatoes, avocados, ground cumin, the remaining 2 garlic cloves (crushed), spring onions, remaining lime juice, most of the chopped coriander and the extra-virgin olive oil. Season well and add enough Tabasco to give the salsa a good kick.
  5. Ladle the soup into serving bowls and spoon over some sour cream followed by some salsa. Alternatively, serve the salsa on the side. Finish with a sprinkling of chopped coriander.
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