We had a zoom call scheduled for 5 pm on a Sunday evening. I checked the clock and was surprised to see that it was already 4:40 pm. I had hoped to get dinner in the Instant Pot so that it would cook while we enjoyed our call. Could I do it?
This recipe was so simple, and perfect for shelter-in-place because the only fresh ingredients are onion, bell pepper, and garlic; the rest are spices and canned goods. And yes, I locked the lid on the IP just in time to pour a glass of wine before we logged in to zoom.
Spring in California isn’t necessarily what we think of as soup weather. But the Instant Pot takes the heat out of cooking, no standing and stirring a steaming hot pot. And by the time we ate our soup al fresco at our patio table, it was in fact cool enough to enjoy a satisfyingly warm soup.
Among the joys of shelter-in-place has been the opportunity to cook, to play with new recipes and pull out old favorites. Still, I find I need to balance my efforts between days when I want to cook elaborately and others when I wish I didn’t have to cook at all. Sometimes it helps to streamline the process, which the IP does beautifully, in order to maximize time together. And with everyone staying home, not rushing off to each one’s separate evening activities, we once again have time to linger over family meals.
BTW, this recipe can easily be made on a stove top if you don’t have an IP. Just taste and adjust time as you go.
1 medium onion, diced
1 bell pepper, diced (or 3-4 mini bell peppers- I use an assortment of red, orange, and yellow for color)
3-4 garlic cloves, minced
1 Tbsp paprika
2 tsp cumin
1 tsp coriander
1-2 tsp chili powder (start with 1 and adjust at the end for taste)
1/4 tsp cayenne
1 28oz can crushed tomatoes, undrained
4 c veggie broth (I use Better Than Bouillon)
2 15oz cans kidney beans, drained/rinsed
1 15oz can black beans, drained/rinsed
Tortilla chips, to serve
Cilantro & green onions to garnish
Vegan cheese, to garnish
Add diced onion to IP and set to saute for 5 minutes. After 3 minutes, add diced peppers and garlic and stir well. Saute 2 more minutes, then stir in spices. Add additional ingredients and stir well to make sure nothing is stuck to the pot. Set to pressure cook on high for 10 minutes. Natural pressure release for 5 minutes and then carefully quick release. If pressed for time, add all ingredients and cook on high pressure for 12 minutes. Taste and adjust seasonings as desired.
To serve, add tortilla chips to the bottom of each bowl. Pour soup over chips, then top with a few more chips. Garnish with cilantro and green onions. If desired, sprinkle bowls with a little vegan cheese.
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