Wednesday, January 5, 2011

Black Bean Soup with Sausage and Potatoes

This is awesome to make the day after Rosemary Roast Chicken, because the flavors from the chicken drippings are wonderful in the Black Bean Soup. If making the soup without the chicken drippings, one could substitute as told below.

Black Bean Soup with Sausage and Potatoes


  • Black beans, 1 lb dry
  • Water, 6 cups
  • Chicken drippings, fat, and juices from earlier dinner -- (or substitute for water and chicken drippings: 6 cups of chicken broth, 1 T rosemary, 1/2 T oregano, and 1/2 cup of oil or fat)
  • Salt & pepper
  • Red potatoes, 7 medium, in large chunks
  • Carrots, 1/2 lb, snack size (yams or sweet potatoes are also good)
  • Sweet Italian sausage, 4 links
  • Balsamic vinegar, 2 T (or red wine or beer)
  • 2 T olive oil
  • Onions, 2 small yellow, chopped


  1. Soak the beans overnight, drain and rinse the next day.
  2. For dinner to be ready about 7:00 PM, start the beans about noon.In a large, heavy pot with a lid, bring the beans, salt, pepper, 6 cups of water, and chicken drippings (or substitutes) to a boil, then reduce heat to a low simmer.
  3. Simmer all afternoon, stirring occassionally. (Note that the pot should be a good heavy one, to avoid burning and sticking.)
  4. About an hour before meal time, add the potatoes and carrots to the soup pot.
  5. In a skillet, brown and cook the sausage, cutting it into 1-inch chunks with the spatula. Add the sausage to soup pot.
  6. Deglaze the skillet with balsamic vinegar, or red wine, or beer, and add to the soup pot. (Deglazing sounds fancy, but it's very simple, and captures a lot of flavor. To deglaze a pan, pour about 2 T of liquid into the pan over heat, let it bubble up and evaporate a bit, while scraping up all the bits in the pan with a spatula. It also makes for an easier pan to wash.)
  7. Add oil to the pan and saute the onions. When soft and browned, add to the soup pot. Deglaze the pan again and add to the soup pot.
  8. Continue to simmer about an hour longer, until potatoes and carrots are easily pierced with a fork.

Invite your friends over, or plan on leftovers. But no complaints, this is super yummy. It's also good with other vegetables, such as celery or spinach. I like to serve it with cornbread.

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