- 1/2 pound dried black beans, soaked overnight in water and drained
- 1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil
- 1 medium onion, minced
- 3 garlic cloves, minced
- 1/2 green bell pepper, minced
- 1 teaspoon ground cumin
- 1 teaspoon dried oregano
- 1/2 cup heavy cream
- 1 tablespoon dry sherry
- 2 teaspoons sherry vinegar
- 1 tablespoon plus 1 teaspoon chopped cilantro
- Salt and freshly ground pepper
- 6 medium shrimp, shelled and deveined
- 1 teaspoon chopped mint
- Cover six 4-inch skewers with water and soak for 2 hours. Put the beans in a medium saucepan, add enough water to cover by 2 inches and bring to a boil. Reduce the heat to low and simmer the beans until tender, about 2 hours; add water as needed to keep the beans submerged. Pour off all but 2 1/2 cups of the cooking liquid.
- Meanwhile, in a medium skillet, heat 3 tablespoons of the olive oil. Add the onion, garlic and green pepper and cook over moderate heat until the vegetables are softened, about 6 minutes. Add the cumin and oregano and cook, stirring, until fragrant, about 2 minutes.
- Scrape the vegetables into the saucepan of beans and add the cream, sherry, vinegar and 1 tablespoon of the cilantro. Working in batches, puree the beans in a blender until very smooth. Return the soup to the saucepan and season with salt and pepper; keep warm.
- Light a grill. In a small bowl, toss the shrimp with the remaining 1 tablespoon of olive oil and 1 teaspoon of cilantro and the mint. Thread 1 shrimp onto each skewer and season with salt and pepper. Grill the shrimp over a hot fire until curled and lightly charred, about 1 minute per side. Pour the soup into tall shot glasses and garnish each glass with a grilled shrimp skewer.
The sherried black bean soup can be refrigerated for up to 3 days and reheated gently.