Soups are in demand on menus as winter approaches. If you have an herb garden you probably still have most of your herbs. Despite a few brown leaves, your h
erbs are perfectly fine to use now. Most stores like Trader Joe’s or Whole Foods sell fresh herbs year round. My chef’s garden at The Greenporter Hotel has still Cilantro, Oregano, Sage, Lavender, Parsley and chives. All of these are great for adding to soups and especially for vegetable stocks.
I serve a lot of bisque-type soups in my bistro, La Cuvee at The Greenporter but they are always light. I like to showcase the vegetable or the legume rather than to use roux or too much cream or butter. I always use a vegetable stock rather than chicken stock with too much sodium.
This week’s soup du jour is Black bean bisque and we didn’t make enough of it. If you’re ever on the North Fork on the weekend, a cup of soup du jour is included with your lunch entree!
Equipment: blender, laddle, soup pot
Two cups of cooked (tender) black beans. Small can of organic black beans is fine.
4 cups of vegetable stock (boxed organic is fine)
4 chopped shallots, sauteed in 2 tablespoons of olive oil until golden brown
1 tablespoon of fresh chopped oregano to be blended into soup
1 pinch of saffron to be blended into soup
salt and pepper to taste
1 avocado sliced for garnish
1 small container of light sour cream for garnish
1 tablespoon of fresh cilantro (optional) for garnish
Set up a blending station. You’ll need a blender along your bowl of beans with sauteed shallots already mixed in and a container of vegetable stock. a laddle and a soup pot. You should plan on blending the beans and vegetable stock in three parts. That way you can pour smooth bisque mixture into separate bowl to make room for next batch. Do not attempt to pour entire mixture into blender all at once. It will not fit and you will end up with an uneven mixture.
Heat just before serving and garnish with avocado, sour cream and chopped Cilantro. This is a great first course or good for a light lunch or dinner with a green salad and quesadillas or chips.
I find pairing bean with wine a bit difficult so this time I suggent you stop at The Greenport Harbor Brewing Company in downtown Greenport for some North Fork beer. The India Pale Ale is a perfect match for the earthy quality of black beans and will stand up to spice if you opt for some hot salsa with your chips or quesadillas to acompany this soup. Find The Greenport Harbor Brewing Company’s Facebook page “Greenport Harbor Brewing Co or on Twitter at http://twitter Tasting hours are Thursday through Sunday from noon to 6 p.m. and the telephone number is 631-477-6681.