Tuesday, September 21, 2010

Southwest Turkey & Black Bean Soup


It seems that Mother Nature, herself, is playing games with us here in the South lately.  While we've had our fair share of abnormally warm hot weather this Summer, it doesn't seem like she really cares.  Being from MI, this is the time of year that I look forward to the most and it's usually right around this time that it really starts feeling (and looking) like Fall.  I realize that the further South you go, the longer it takes and I'm okay with that.  Last year was beautiful down here during the Fall and I really have no complaints.  However, it has been cooling off quite a bit at night and in the mornings around here (so much that Chris even wore a jacket to work last week) and we even had a few days in the 80's which, to us down here, feels like it's in the low 70's.  I got excited!  I brought out my cute little cardigans and wore them around with jeans and I even had my first taste of the year of the infamous Pumpkin Spice Latte!  You know it's Fall, when those little babies come out! 

But oh the mind games that Mother Nature plays with us.  Wouldn't you know it?!  It's been well over 90 degrees again and in some spots, it even reached 100 degrees.  100 degrees?!  Really Mother Nature?!  That's what you're going to give us after we've suffered through a grueling and ridiculously hot Summer?!  Please....that hot weather doesn't scare me and it certainly doesn't stop me from already making my Fall meals and baked goods (hence the Pumpkin Chocolate Chip Scones with Maple Glaze). 

With the very short spurt of what felt like cooler weather on it's way, the shelves overflowing with Autumn and Halloween goodies in the stores and the ads for cute jackets, sweater dresses, awesome boots and the like, I'm already geared up and ready to go!  So with Fall weather, comes a lot of warm, hearty and comforting meals, especially soup!  This recipe is definitely one of my favorites (I know, I say that about every recipe) but I realized that I had never made it for Chris!  It's actually a healthy soup as it's made with ground turkey, but you would never know it because the flavors are so warm and wonderful together! 

Chris especially loved this meal!  We had it with some nice, crusty French bread (perfect for dipping or as they say here in the South, "sopping") and he even had another helping and took some for work the next day....that's a sure sign, in our house, that the meal was a success!

Southwest Turkey & Black Bean Soup

2 - 15oz. cans Black Beans, drained and rinsed
3 cups Chicken Broth
2 Tbsp. Olive Oil
1 Sm. Onion, chopped
2 Sm. Green Peppers, chopped
2 cloves Garlic, minced
2 Tsp. Cumin
1 - 15oz. can Diced Tomatoes, un-drained
1 Sm. Jalapeno Pepper, seeded and minced
1-1.5 lbs. Ground Turkey
Salt to taste
Pepper to taste

In a food processor or blender, puree' 2 cups of the black beans with 1 cup of chicken broth; set aside. 

In a Dutch Oven or large pot, heat the olive oil over medium heat.  Add in the onions and peppers; saute' until tender (about 7 minutes).  Add in the garlic, cumin, tomatoes, the remaining black beans and black bean puree'; mix well.  Gradually add in the remaining chicken broth, stirring constantly.  Bring the mixture to a boil and then reduce heat to simmer for 20 minutes. 

In a large pan, cook the ground turkey over med-high heat until slightly browned.  Season to taste with salt and pepper.  Mix in with the soup mixture.  Add in the jalapeno and cook until heated through.  Season with salt and pepper.  Serve immediately.

Yield: 6 Servings
Source: Adapted from Grand Temptations


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