Another recipe from A Year of Slow Cooking. I just love Stephanie's blog - I think I've tried more recipes from her slow cooking blog than I have from any other blog. I just like using my crockpot - its so nice to come home from work and having our dinner ready to go. I'm gone a minimum of 12 hours in the day between commuting, working, and picking up Carson, so I don't always feel like cooking when I get home, either. So the crockpot solves everything... well almost! :) Anyway, we tried salsa chicken and black bean soup earlier this week. It was so, so good!! Great flavor - but I love soups like this. We all loved it and I'll definitely make it again! It turned out more like a chili than a soup for me, though. But that's ok - it was still delicious!
I'm so glad I've broadened my tastes for soups over the last year. That was kind of an unspoken goal of mine over the last year. I never used to like soup... and I still don't really like broth. The only soup I would really eat before were broccoli cheese, baked potato, and seafood chowder... I liked them if they were thick and creamy. But I steered clear of any thin-broth soups. I think I've done pretty well in broadening my tastes for soups... this will be my 21st soup recipe to post on my blog... and I've enjoyed almost all of them! Now I love soup! I'm glad, because its just so easy and nutritious! Well most soups, anyway. :)
I'll update later with a picture.
Crockpot Salsa Chicken and Black Bean Soup
1 pound chicken
1 cup dried black beans (or 2 cans, drained and rinsed... but I used dried)
4 cups chicken broth
1 cup sliced mushrooms
1 cup frozen corn
1 jar prepared salsa (16 oz)
1 1/2 tsp cumin
1/2 cup sour cream (to stir in at the end)
shredded cheddar cheese, avocado slices, cilantro (all optional)
I used a 6 quart crockpot. You will need a 4 quart or larger.
If you know you are going to make this the night before soak the black beans in enough water to cover and another 2 inches overnight. In the morning, drain the water and rinse the beans.
If you don't have super hard water or live in a super high altitude, you can quick soak the beans by pouring boiling water over them and let them sit for an hour or two.
Drain and rinse the beans. Add to the crockpot. Put in the chicken, and add the broth and salsa. Pour in the corn and mushrooms, and add the cumin. Stir, but don't disturb the beans - let them stay at the bottom of the pot, closest to the heating element.
Cover and cook on high for 9 hours. Yes, High. For 9 hours. It took a crazy long time for the beans to soften, but they did.
If you are using beans you soaked overnight, canned beans, or pre-cooked beans, you can cook on low for 6-8 hours, or on high for 4-5 -similar to normal soup-cooking time.
If you'd like to thicken the broth, you can use your immersible blender to blend a bit of the beans and chicken. If you don't have one, scoop out 2 cups of the soup and carefully blend in your traditional blender. Stir the mixture back into the crockpot. (I did not do this, ours was plenty thick!)
Stir in the 1/2 cup of sour cream before serving (I just used a small scoop on top of each bowl, rather than stirring it in), and garnish with shredded cheese and avocado slices (did not use either, but was wishing I'd had some avocadoes!).