One of our very favourite winter soups.
Soak the beans in cold water overnight. Next day, drain and rinse them, place them in a saucepan and cover with at least
Meanwhile, peel and finely chop the onion, and fry it in the oil in a heavy saucepan until beginning to brown. Add the cumin, paprika, cayenne pepper or chilli and cloves, and cook for 2–3 minutes. Stir in the tomato purée, and cook until the mixture thickens and darkens as the water evaporates. Pour on half the stock or water, bring to the boil, cover and simmer for 30 minutes or until the onions are soft.
Allow the cooked beans to cool slightly in their liquid before making a purée of them in a food processor or blender. It is best to do this in two batches, unless you have a large-capacity machine. Add the bean purée to the onion and spice mixture, together with the rest of the stock or water. Stir until thoroughly mixed, bring to the boil, and add salt to taste. If the consistency is too thick for you, gradually add
There are several ways of serving this soup - with or without sherry,
© 1995 Frances Bissell. All rights reserved.