Makes six servings
Prep time: 10 to 15 minutes, plus time to soak beans
Cook time: 75 minutes
- 2 tbs. extra-virgin olive oil
- 2 cups diced yellow onions
- Sea salt, to taste
- 1 1/2 tsp. seeded and finely diced jalapeño pepper
- 1 tbs. minced fresh garlic
- 1 1/2 tsp. dried oregano
- 1/2 tsp. ground cumin
- 1/4 tsp. ground cinnamon
- Pinch of cayenne
- 8 cups vegetable broth
- 2 cups dried black beans, soaked, rinsed, and drained
- 1 6-in. strip kombu
- 1 cinnamon stick
- 1 bay leaf
- 2 cups diced sweet potatoes (about 2 medium sweet potatoes)
- 2 tsp. freshly squeezed lime juice
- 1/4 cup chopped fresh cilantro
- Heat the olive oil in a soup pot over medium heat. Add the onions and a pinch of salt, and sauté until translucent, about four minutes. Add the jalapeño, garlic, oregano, cumin, cinnamon, cayenne, and 1/4 teaspoon salt, and sauté for one minute. Pour in 1/2 cup of the broth and stir to loosen any bits stuck to the bottom. Cook until the liquid is reduced by half.
- Add the remaining broth, along with the black beans, kombu, cinnamon stick, and bay leaf. Increase the heat to high and bring to a boil.
- Decrease the heat to medium-low, cover partially, and simmer briskly (bubbles should break the surface regularly) until the beans are tender, about 45 minutes. Stir in the sweet potatoes and 1/4 teaspoon salt. Cover and simmer until the sweet potatoes are just tender, about seven minutes. With a slotted spoon, remove and discard the kombu, cinnamon stick, and bay leaf.
- Ladle 2 cups of the beans and sweet potatoes into a blender and process until velvety smooth. Stir the blended mixture back into the soup and cook until just heated through. Stir in the lime juice. Taste; you may want to add salt and a spritz of lime juice. Top with cilantro and serve.