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Tuesday, March 10, 2009

First Meal Back: Pinto Bean Soup

I’m sure all my faithful readers are wondering what I cooked for our first meal back from our 3 day trip to Arkansas. There’s nothing like being on the road to make you yearn for a home-cooked meal, made of simple and good ingredients.

Simple and good: that must be pinto (or any) bean soup. So, cook a pound of dried beans. Meanwhile, sauté a chopped onion or two and a couple of garlic cloves in some oil. Then add the remains of a large can of Rotel tomatoes and a large can of crushed tomatoes that have been languishing in the fridge. (Do this after checking to make sure contents are still OK.) I had about ¼ can of each. Of course, you might have to open a can or two of tomatoes. Dump in pot with onions. When the beans are done, add them (beans take a long time). I drained most of the bean liquid and added some water, but that is up to you. Puree with your stick blender—or not.

I like to cook soup and then let it sit for a while. It may be an illusion, but I think the flavors meld and improve when you reheat it after it has been sitting.

Serve topped with cheese (we used pepper jack, but any would do) and crushed corn chips (left over from trip). Of course, we had to add some hot sauce to this already spicy dish.

This was wholesome, easy, cheap. It also used up those cans of tomatoes that have been bothering me. There’s enough for at least two more meals.

Extras: If you have leftover rice, add that. If you have frozen corn, add that. Throw in the little bit left in your jar of salsa. Whatever you do will be good.

Dear reader: what do you crave after being away from home?


Tracey McBride said...

This sounds amazingly delicious! I heartily agree with you that there is magic in giving it the gift of time (i.e., allowing time for the soup/food to sit and the flavors to blend into one another). What's that old saying? "If you believe it, it's true." Perhaps we should modify that other saying..."we eat with our eyes first" into "we eat with our thoughts first". But I digress. Great post!

Frugal Scholar said...

@Tracey--Thanks for commenting. I have read and enjoyed your book! I am honored that you enjoyed my post.