Black & blue corn tortilla soup with bacon & pumpkin

Black & blue corn tortilla soup with bacon & pumpkin

By
From
Cantina
Serves
8
Photographer
Chris Middleton

Black bean soup is a classic for a reason. It’s comforting, hearty and one of the most versatile soups you will ever come across. You can add your favourite vegetables and herbs and spices to complement and liven up the earthy nature of this soup. This version uses bacon and ham hock to develop a really solid base and is served with pumpkin (winter squash) and goat’s cheese crema for sweetness and balance.

Ingredients

Quantity Ingredient
100ml olive oil
200ml smoked bacon, diced
4 celery stalks, sliced
1 red onion, finely diced
4 garlic cloves, finely chopped
1 red bullhorn chilli, diced
1 1/2 tablespoons ground cumin
1 tablespoon smoked paprika
1 tablespoon dried chilli flakes
1kg smoked ham hock
3 litres chicken stock
220g dried black beans, soaked in cold water overnight
sea salt, to taste
freshly ground black pepper, to taste
200g blue corn chips, to serve

Pumpkin

Quantity Ingredient
100ml olive oil
500ml butternut pumpkin, cut into bite-sized pieces
55g sugar
2 jalapenos, sliced
1 large handful oregano leaves, roughly chopped

Goat’s crema

Quantity Ingredient
400g soft goat’s cheese
250g sour cream
1 tablespoon ground coriander
1 garlic clove
2 limes, juiced, or to taste
sea salt, to taste

Method

  1. Heat the oil in a large heavy-based saucepan over medium heat. Cook the bacon, vegetables, garlic and spices for 5 minutes, or until softened and fragrant. Add the ham hock and chicken stock and bring to the boil. Reduce the heat and gently simmer for 30 minutes. Add the pre-soaked beans, cover and gently simmer for a further 45–60 minutes, until tender.
  2. Meanwhile, to prepare the pumpkin, heat the oil in a large frying pan over medium heat. Fry the pumpkin for 10 minutes, or until it begins to caramelise. Add the sugar and continue to cook, until well coloured. Add the jalapeño and oregano and cook for a further minute. Set aside.
  3. To prepare the goat’s crema, combine the goat’s cheese, sour cream, coriander and garlic in a food processor and blend to combine. Season with the lime juice and salt.
  4. Once the beans are tender, remove the ham hock and approximately 300 g of the beans and set aside – you need enough beans to garnish the soup.
  5. Blend the soup using a hand-held blender, until smooth. Strain through a fine-mesh sieve. Return to the pan and season with salt and pepper to taste.
  6. Shred the meat off the ham hock. Add the ham and the reserved beans to the soup and stir to combine.
  7. To serve, place a spoonful of the warm cooked pumpkin, along with the jalapeño and oregano leaves, in a neat pile in the centre of the soup bowls or plates. Pour in the soup and top with a generous spoonful of goat’s crema. Serve with the corn chips, crushed if desired.
Tags:
Latin
Mexican
Mexico
Cantina
Paul Wilson
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