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Bajan Black Bean Soup     HT  SP  West Indian  190mins plus soaking

Serves 6-8    Hot   Pork  Soup  Gluten Wheat free  Eggless  West Indies  Caribbean   North America



350g/12oz Dried Black Beans, soaked overnight
1 small  Ham Hock
2L/70fl.oz. Water
3 tbsp Olive Oil
2 Onions, roughly chopped
4 Cloves of Garlic, crushed
3 Fresh Chilli Peppers
6 Allspice Berries, lightly crushed
2 teasp Black Treacle or dark Molasses
3 tbsp Tomato Paste
The Grated rind and juice from one lemon


Crème Fraîche or sour cream to serve



1. Drain the pre-soaked beans and place in a large saucepan together with the hock . Cover with the cold water and bring slowly to the boil, then reduce the heat, partially cover and leave to simmer whilst you prepare step 2.


2. Heat the olive oil in a frying pan, add the onion, garlic, chili, allspice and lemon rind and fry gently, stirring from time to time, until the onions are soft and transparent. 


3. Add the onion  mixture to the beans, mix well and continue to simmer, partially covered, for a further 2 hours. 


4. Add the treacle, lemon juice, zest and tomato paste, stir well and continue to cook for a further 30 minutes. 


5. At the end of the cooking time, remove the hock, pick off any meat and return it to the pan. 


6. Transfer the soup to a food processor and process until fairly smooth. You will have to do this in batches.


 7. Return the processed soup to the saucepan, adding a little more water if it's too thick. Adjust the seasoning and heat through for 5 minutes, stirring.


To serve - transfer to individual soup bowls with a dollop of Crème Frâiche or soured cream lightly stirred through.



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Common terms used when making sauces

Blend - To mix together ingredients, usually of different consistencies, to a smooth and even texture, utilising a utensil such as a wooden spoon or blender.

Coats a spoon – when a substance is rendered thin/thick enough so that when a wooden or metal spoon is inserted into it and taken out, the substance leaves a thin film “coating the spoon”.

Boil - To bring a liquid to boiling temperature and to maintain it throughout the cooking time.

Chop to – To cut into pieces of approximately the same size


Tips, Options and Substitutions

Main equipment required to make this recipe

Measuring Jug


Wooden or Plastic Spoon

Chopping knife

Chopping Board

Blender, liquidiser or hand blender


Make Ahead

Allow to cool, cover and refrigerate


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