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Meatless Monday Musings


It’s Meatless Monday, and here in Northwestern Ontario we’ve just come through a January cold snap (which some people complained about, but which was reassuring for a climate activist!). It’s the time of the year that it’s great to curl up in front of our pellet stove with a good book (I’ve just started “The Value of Nothing” by Raj Patel) after a crisp walk or ski. I’m heading outside for just such a walk shortly, with Finn, our Norwegian Elkhound. When I come back, I’ll put a soup on the stove to simmer for supper. I might even bake a loaf of bread, inspired by our Transition Network event this past Saturday where Anne Jisca, a young woman with a talent for making the most delicious bread, lead a group of 15 of us through the stages of making 100% spelt bread and buns.  If you’re interested in what you missed by not being there, you can go to her website, She’s got video tutorials and her bread recipe posted (see bread making video below).

One of our favourite soups, winter or summer, is black bean soup; the recipe was given to my husband by a colleague when he was a medical resident spending some time in Churchill, Manitoba. Here it is, Churchill Black Bean Soup:

Soak 2 or 3 cups of black beans for a few hours or more.

In a large pot fry 2 or 3 chopped onions in quite a bit of extra-virgin olive oil (1/4 – 1/2 cup) with a lot of garlic, some crushed peppers, oregano and basil. Also add 1 Tablespoon of cumin seeds.

Add your beans plus soaking liquid and water to cover by about 4 cm. Cook until soft.

Puree most of it in a blender, leaving some beans intact. Add more water for desired consistency. Add salt and pepper to taste, and a few squeezes of lemon juice.

Serve with a dollop of plain yogurt, and a dollop of salsa you have made from tomatoes, cilantro, green onions, fresh jalapenos, some salt and a bit of sugar.


Here’s Anne Jisca making bread:


More links:


Anne Jisca’s Healthy Pursuits

Meatless Monday

6 Comments leave one →
  1. 2012/01/23 11:18 am

    Thanks for featuring my bread-making video, Christine. 🙂

    I love black bean soup!

    • 2012/01/23 3:14 pm

      You’re so welcome, Anne Jisca – your seminar on Saturday was great, and worth sharing!

  2. 2012/01/23 11:27 am

    Great! Was looking for something to do with my black beans. Thanks!

    • 2012/01/23 3:15 pm

      Enjoy – don’t forget the tomato salsa, if you have the ingredients, it really adds a lot.

  3. 2012/01/23 11:59 am

    other Jen here, I too was looking for black bean solutions, great Jens think alike.

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