After making that bean dip last week I found myself drowning in it. It seemed like a great idea at the time, and it really was tasty, but oh my there was a lot of it!
Since there was no party looming on my horizon (still jammed up with work, I am) I enjoyed it for a few days, but one simply can’t live on bean dip alone! Once I hit my limit I started thinking about what to do with what was left.
I still had a good couple of cups of the dip, and it started looking more and more like soup base to me. I have used beans in the past, along with potatoes, to thicken soups and they word fine. Actually, I think beans work better than potatoes, which can become a bit gummy if they get overworked.
Even though I had almost no time this past week I found a few minutes to turn this into a fast dinner option. If you are not opposed (and I am most fervently not) to boxed broth, or if you happen to have some nice chicken or vegetable stock in your freezer (or goose… mmmmm!) you can go for zero to dinner in almost no time. And, much as I enjoyed eating cold dip, hot soup was a perfect change!
The thing that made this more than just ok was the mushrooms. I buy dried porcini (cepes) at my grocery. They cost the earth, but a little goes a very long way. And, they keep pretty much forever, so I make sure to keep ’em on hand.
The trick is to give the ‘shrooms plenty of time to rehydrate. I grind them up in my “spices-only” coffee grinder (oh I love my thrift store!) and add them to soups, stews, sauces… they are so rich in flavor that it adds a whole dimension to something like this simple soup.
Depending on what you are creating, you can rehydrate them in a bit of hot water for a few minutes and add the resulting “tea” to your pot, or just toss the dried powdered mushrooms in and let the whole thing simmer.
I chose the latter method, and it took almost no time to turn out this
Leftover Bean Dip Soup
3 cups Texa-Tuscan Bean Dip
1 T ground dried porcini
1 C water, vegetable stock or chicken stock (more if needed)
fresh ground black pepper to taste
Combine all (I used a whisk) in a heavy saucepan, bring to a bare simmer, turn heat to “as low as possible” and stir occasionally so it doesn’t stick. Cook for 15 minutes or so, check for salt and pepper, and there you have it!
Yes, a green salad would be nice with this soup, some good bread of course and red wine or a beer if you’re that sort (my sort!) or person… mmmmm!! Fast and easy, and even better tomorrow too!