This is a vegan riff on a well-known favourite. We discovered this at Cathy Fisher’s wonderful Straight Up Food website. Cathy’s recipes and book are an excellent resource for no-oil vegans (plant-based whole foods diet), especially those who are just starting out on a vegan diet.
We’ve tweaked Cathy’s recipe to include additional vegetables, mushrooms and smoked paprika.
Keeps in the fridge for up to 5 days. Freezes well for 3 months.
Black beans, canned
Strain the beans, reserving the liquid. Set beans aside.
Water or vegetable stock, with reserved bean liquid and liquid from tofu
Celery seed, ground
Fenugreek seed, ground
Bay leaves, fresh
Chipoltle chilli powder (optional)
Combine in a 5-litre (quart) or larger casserole or stock pot over high heat.
Cover and bring to a boil.
Split peas, dried
Add to pot.
Lower heat and simmer for 20 minutes, stirring every 5 minutes. (Meanwhile, proceed with the next steps.)
Dry fry in a non-stick pan over low–medium heat until translucent, about 5 minutes. Stir frequently to avoid sticking, adding a small amount of water if necessary.
Garlic, finely chopped
Add to pan and continue to fry until the garlic is fragrant, about another 2 minutes.
Remove pan from heat and set aside.
Onions and garlic, from E
Carrot, halved lengthways and sliced
Parsnips, halved lengthways and sliced
Celery, halved lengthways and sliced
2 medium ribs
Mushrooms, white button, quartered
Potato, peeled and diced
Yam, peeled and diced
Celeriac, peeled and diced (optional)
Add to pot with the split peas C and stir to combine.
Cover and bring to a boil over high heat.
Reduce heat and simmer until potatoes and yam are soft, about 15 minutes. Stir frequently.
Tofu (firm), diced
Black beans, from A
Add to pot and stir to thoroughly combine.
Return to boil over hight heat, about 3 minutes.
Remove from heat.
Peas, frozen (optional)
Corn, frozen (optional)
Kale leaves, roughly chopped
Add to pot and stir to combine, pushing the leaves down into the pot. Continue stirring until the leaves are fully wilted, about 3 minutes.
Chives, finely chopped (optional)
Serve and garnish.
Original: 2010. Adapted: 2017.
The stirring is important as it breaks up the split peas slightly while ‘emulsifying’ the sauce. It also serves a secondary purpose of bringing down the heat of the pan—since everything is else is cooked, we don’t want the residual heat to overcook the vegetables and make them mushy.
Yukon Gold potatoes are Cathy’s favourite in this soup because they are buttery and creamy.
If you can get ‘English spinach’, it is superb in this soup. We even like the stems.
Fava beans (broad beans), blanched and podded, are a good substitute for all or part of the peas in this recipe. They pair well with the mushrooms and yam.
It is not necessary to peel the yam, potato and carrot. It works fine either way.
We use a fine microplane for the garlic, which is quick and effective and it will cook in a shorter time than finely chopped garlic. As little as 1 minute is required.
Other canned dry beans such as kidney beans, navy beans or pinto beans can be substituted for black beans in this recipe.