This is the second recipe in my series on making the most of your leftover roast chicken. See Part 1 – Cost Efficiency in the Kitchen, or How to make One Chicken last for Three meals and the first recipe for making stock from a leftover chicken carcass. Stay tuned for a pasta recipe!
One of the things to keep in mind when trying to effectively use leftovers is to create a disguise of sorts so that the consumers of your cooking don’t feel like they are actually eating the same meal 3 nights in a row. Which, they kinda are.
This recipe for a black bean and chicken soup does not taste like a roast chicken at all, but instead transforms into depths of smoky and spiciness which will completely hide the origin from your family. The chunky soup reheats very well and I find is even better the next day, so feel free to make ahead or freeze it. When I make this I make the chicken stock and cook the beans simultaneously to save time.
Note: Although this series is about using chicken leftovers, this recipe can be easily made vegetarian by replacing the chicken stock with the bean cooking liquid and adding extra veggies in the place of the cooked chicken.
Black Bean and Chicken Soup(4 servings)
Soak the beans overnight in water. Discard the water and drain the beans, rinse them with a few changes of clean water . Cover with 2 inches of cold water in a saucepan. Add a quarter of an onion and a bay leaf. Bring to a simmer and cook for 45 minutes. Skim any scum which rises to the surface. Check for tenderness and add 1 teaspoon of salt. Continue cooking them until tender. Reserve the liquid for another purpose and reserve the beans for the soup. If you are using canned beans, you can skip this step.
Soak the ancho chili in hot water for 10 minutes. Remove the stem and seeds and discard them. Finely chop it.
Heat a tablespoon of olive oil over low medium heat. Dice the remaining onion and add to the pot, along with the clove of garlic, the diced jalapeno and ancho peppers, the coriander and the cumin. Sweat over low heat until onion is soft. Add the chicken stock and beans. Add a 1/2 teaspoon of salt and freshly ground black pepper. Bring to a simmer and allow to simmer for at least 45 minutes. Using an immersion blender, gently blend the soup into a chunky consistency. Add the shredded chicken and cook for at least 15 minutes more. Stir in the fresh parsley or cilantro and serve.