(Quantities are very approximate. Soup is forgiving.)
Better Than Bouillon vegetarian broth base
herbes de Provence
optional: white wine
dollop of olive oil
smidgen of butter
2 - 3 cloves of garlic, chopped
big knob of ginger, chopped
2 c. red onion, chopped
about 1 c. each carrots, celery root, and red pepper, chopped
1 c. canned corn
fresh sage, rosemary, thyme, minced
3 c.+ black coco beans, soaked overnight
optional: sour cream, bacon or ham, feta cheese
Make about 6 c. broth with Better Than Boullion; season with bay leaf, rum, and Worcestershire, or wine if you have leftovers.
Taste for salt; usually there’s enough in the broth already.
In a large pot, heat oil and butter, and sauté garlic and ginger until slightly browned.
Add vegetables one kind at a time (I once read this in a Marcella Hazan cookbook, something about keeping flavors distinct, and I’ve done it ever since), starting with onions, then carrots, celery root, pepper, and corn.
Add dried and fresh herbs.
Add beans and broth, and bring to boil.
Lower heat and simmer until beans are tender, approximately 3 hours, adding water if necessary to keep vegetables moist.
Cool, then partially puree with an immersion stick, leaving some chunky bits.
Serve garnished with sour cream and/or cut-up and frizzled Canadian bacon or ham (the latter for my husband; otherwise, the soup is vegetarian). Crumbled feta also might be good.
(No idea how many servings this makes. A lot.)