2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
2-3 cloves fresh garlic, thinly sliced
1 dried red chili, crushed
1 teaspoon minced fresh ginger
1 red onion, diced
1 carrot, diced
1 cup butternut squash, diced
Mirin (rice cooking wine)
1 cup fresh/frozen corn kernels (I used 1 can drained)
2 cups cooked black turtle beans (I used 1 can black beans drained)
5 cups spring or filtered water
2 scallions, thinly sliced on the diagonal, for garnish.
2 slices of bacon cut into small pieces (optional)
Parmesan cheese (optional)
5 cups spring or filtered water (optional: substitute chicken broth for part of the water)
Place oil, garlic, chili, ginger and onion in a soup pot and turn the heat to medium. When the onions begin to sizzle, add a pinch of salt and sauté for 2 minutes. Stir in carrot and squash, a pinch of salt and a generous sprinkle of Mirin. Sauté until just shiny with oil. Add corn and beans (optional: add bacon) and stir gently. Add water, cover and bring to a boil. Reduce heat to low and cook for 30 minutes. Season to taste with salt and simmer for 5 minutes more. Serve garnished with fresh scallions (optional: sprinkle with Parmesan cheese). Makes 5-6 servings.