Tuesday, September 1, 2009

comfort food

As I mentioned in my last post, Sunday was a very fall-like day. Sixty degrees felt like winter after the heat wave we endured the prior few weeks. Naturally I was inspired to make comfort food and decided upon black bean soup & crusty bread. I've made this bread quite a few times before and it is quite delicious (in fact Brad has declared this the only bread I'm allowed to make anymore). This time I made 2 loaves and added whole garlic cloves to one before I baked which turned into a delicious loaf of garlic bread. The soup is incredibly easy to make and takes only about 1/2 hour from start to finish.

Black Bean Soup
A drizzle of olive
1 onion, chopped
2 carrots, peeled and chopped
4 small potatoes, chopped (or 1-2 large)
1 jalapeño pepper, seeded and minced
4 cloves garlic, crushed
1 small red or yellow bell pepper, seeded and chopped
2 tsp. ground cumin
1 can black beans
2 tomatoes, chopped
2 C water
Salt and pepper to taste

Heat the oil in a large saucepan set over medium-high heat and sauté the onion, carrot and potatoes for about 5 minutes, until they begin to soften. Finely chop the jalapeño, removing the seeds first if you don’t want your soup to be too hot (I left a few in which added a little heat to the soup). Add them to the pot along with the garlic, red pepper, and cumin and cook for another minute. Add the beans from the can without draining, tomatoes and water. Bring the soup to a boil, reduce the heat to low, cover and cook for 15-20 minutes, until the carrot is tender.

Serve with a dollop of low fat plain yogurt and sprinkle with fresh cilantro & feta.

Simple Crusty Bread

1 1/2 tablespoons yeast (active-dry)
1 1/2 tablespoons kosher salt
6 1/2 cups unbleached, all-purpose flour, more for dusting dough

In a large bowl mix yeast and salt into 3 cups lukewarm water (about 100 degrees). Stir in flour, mixing until there are no dry patches. Cover with a clean towel and let rise and room temperature for 2 hours.

2. When dough has risen, sprinkle a little flour on dough and divide in half. Turn dough in hands to lightly stretch surface, creating a rounded top and a lumpy bottom. Sprinkle cornmeal on pizza peel or cookie sheet and place dough on it (if adding garlic, add now - I added about 10 cloves); let rest 40 minutes. Repeat with remaining dough or refrigerate it.

3. Place broiler pan on bottom of oven. Place baking stone on middle rack and turn oven to 450 degrees; heat stone at that temperature for 20 minutes.

4. Dust dough with flour, slash the top with serrated or very sharp knife three times. Slide onto stone. Pour one cup hot water into broiler pan and shut oven quickly to trap steam. Bake until well browned, about 30 minutes. Cool completely.

black bean soup recipe adapted from dinnerwithjulie.com

crusty bread recipe from thewednesdaychef.typepad.com


Anonymous said...

I want that bread!!!!

Hazel's mom said...

I want to make this bread but don't have a baking stone. Any idea if I can just bake it?

Sarah @ the naughtytastebud said...

Hey Shalimar -

Go to the original recipe site (i have the link at the bottom of my post) and she gives the instructions for baking in a bread pan. It's sooooo delicious!

Hazel's mom said...

Got it. Thanks! I hadn't noticed those links before. I'll have to get back to the store for some yeast before I can make it. I'll let you know if it turns out. I haven't made bread since... high school I think? It failed miserably and I didn't want to try again. :)

Hazel's mom said...

Finally made the bread. I'll admit that I went to the website and decided to make the original recipe. It was quite a hit - Eric said I could make it every day. Thanks for a successful bread experience!

Sarah @ the naughtytastebud said...

Shalimar...glad it turned out good for you! My mother-in-law has healthified the bread (whole wheat flour, flax seeds, etc.) So I'll be trying her recipe this week...hopefully to post soon!

Hazel's mom said...

My fourth loaf of bread will go in the oven soon. I'm sure I'll be making this at least once a week for some time. Yum!