- 2-3 tsp. extra virgin olive oil,
plus more for serving
- 1 ½ tsp. fennel seeds
- 1 medium onion, diced
- 4 cloves garlic, minced
- 1 tsp. dried oregano
- 2 bay leaves
- 1 (28 oz.) can tomatoes— crushed, diced, or whole peeled (squished) (see Note)
- 2 cups cooked black beans, including their cooking liquid (or sub ⅔ cup water or stock)
- 1 ½-2 cups water or stock
- Salt and pepper
- Heat a large pot over medium heat. Add the oil and fennel seeds. Sauté until the seeds turn brown.
- Add the onion and a pinch of salt, stirring constantly until the onion comes up to temperature, to prevent them from sticking to the pan. Cook until the onion is soft and translucent.
- Add the garlic, oregano, and bay leaves, and sauté until toasty and fragrant, about 30 seconds.
- Add the tomatoes, beans, and 1 ½ cups water or stock. Season with salt and pepper.
- Bring to a simmer and cook partially covered for at least 10 minutes to combine and deepen flavours. Add an additional ½ cup water or stock if the soup seems too thick for your liking.
- Remove from the heat and remove the bay leaves. Taste and adjust for salt and pepper. Serve with a drizzle of olive oil if you’d like.
- Refrigerate any leftovers in an airtight container for up to five days or freeze for up to three months.
Any type of canned tomato works here, and I use whatever I have. Crushed tomatoes make a smoother soup. Diced tomatoes add a little more texture. If I had to pick a favourite, it would be whole peeled: add them to the pot one by one, squishing them up in your clean hand as you do, before pouring in any remaining juice from the can. This creates a varied, slurpable texture, one I find absolutely delicious. Plus, squishing tomatoes in your hand is just fun.
I take a page from Indian cooking techniques and toast whole fennel seeds in a little oil before adding the onion to sauté. This simple step adds a world of flavour.
Nutrition facts per serving
Calories 212; fat 4 g; protein 9 g; carbs 35 g.
Courtesy of The Vegan Family Cookbook by Anna Pippus / Penguin Random House © 2021 / Republished with permission.
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Photography by Anna Pippus
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