Monday, September 24, 2012

16-Bean and Quinoa Soup

I wanted to prepare a dish that didn’t require a trip to the grocery store, so I rummaged through my pantry and fridge this week and ended up making a variation of Bittman’s Basic Bean Soup on page 136 of the hardcover edition. I used a 16-bean mix from Target, vegetable broth, the soup triad (onion, celery, and carrots), quinoa, garlic, and butter in my soup. 
I referenced “The Basic of Preparing and Cooking Beans” on pg. 410-412 and decided not to soak the beans ahead of time since my bean mix included lentils and split peas. After cleaning the beans I brought them to a boil in the vegetable broth.
I then lowered the temperature on the stove and added the rest of my vegetables, a couple pinches of dried thyme, and some bay leaves. The soup simmered for about an hour and smelled delicous! 
 My only real difficulty with the meal was trying to figure out when the beans were finished since each of the beans cooked at different rates. When I thought I had about 15 minutes of cooking time left I added about a cup of quinoa. I’ve never cooked with quinoa before, but have been highly intrigued after my mom started raving about the grain a couple of months ago. To finish off my soup, I added a couple tablespoons of butter  and minced garlic into the pot.  I am not a vegetarian, and rarely make a meatless meal, but this was wonderfully filling and oh so tasty! My boyfriend is pretty excited about these weekly assignments and has decided to rate each of the meals I make for him. My soup earned me 5 out of 5 stars!

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