- 2 cups Cherokee Trail of Tears Black Beans, dried (or 4 cups canned)
- 2 pounds delicata squash, peeled, seeded and diced (substitute any winter squash)
- 1 cup fresh cilantro, chopped (Culantro can be used, for a stronger more New World flavor)
- 1 cup crema (substitute sour cream)
- 1 cup Oaxaca cheese, cut into small cubes
- 1/2 cup sunflower seed oil (I recommend Stony Brook Whole Hearted Foods oil, made in NY)
- 2 limes, juiced
- 6 dried ancho chiles (4,000–9,000 SHU)
- 6 cloves of garlic, crushed
- 1 tablespoon salt
- 1 tablespoon black pepper (fresh coarse ground)
- 1 teaspoon epazote, dried
1. Rinse beans. When using dried beans, soak them overnight in water or bring the beans and water to a boil and let sit for an hour prior to step 2.
2. Bring beans with at least 8 cups of water to a boil in a large pot. Add dried peppers and simmer covered for an hour or until somewhat soft, yet still with a tooth/firm skin.
3. In a separate saute pan or pot, bring sunflower seed oil to high heat. Add squash and onions, cook at high heat for two minutes, reduce heat and cook until soft.
4. Add squash, onions, epazote, salt, pepper and garlic into beans and water. Bring to a boil.
5. Remove chiles from the mix. Take off the stems, remove seeds, dice and add them back to the soup.
6. Remove three cups of the soup. Puree in a food processor or blender and return it to the larger pot.
7. Heat to serve. Add a pinch of cheese to each bowl and garnish with a dollop of crema or sour cream, cilantro, flaky salt, ground black pepper and freshly squeezed lime juice.