Black Bean SoupI’m sitting on so many recipes. It’s overwhelming. I haven’t felt like I have had anything to talk about, so I’ve been cooking, and not writing, for many weeks. Really, for most of this year. Recently, I was on my way to New Mexico, my favorite place, and I wrote this essay, and decided, WTF, just post it. This is modeled after Mary Pipher’s Writing to the Change the World (if you’re a writer, buy this book). This has not been edited, not at all. I wrote this on a plane, from Fort Worth to Albuquerque, in the window seat, next to a woman who drank Diet Coke and a man who ordered a Bloody Mary. I feel like that says a lot, in and of itself. And I’m realizing, as I’m re-reading through my short essay, that I use a lot of the same type of verbiage over and over. I don’t know what that means, but here goes.


I’m not a mom and I don’t think I’ll ever be one.  I say don’t think because I’ve never been able to predict what will happen next week, or next year.

I’m 37 years old, and a Leo. I was a month premature, so I should’ve been a Virgo.  I feel like that says a lot. 

When I was born, the doctor said I wouldn’t live through the night, and told my parents to call in a priest and read my last rights.  So they did.  But I didn’t want those to be my last rights.  And so I’m still here.

Most of the people around me think I’m older then I am, and despite the fact that I have all gray hair, I don’t think it’s because of the way I look.  But I’ve been known to be wrong.

I live in Texas and I swore many times over I’d never live in Texas.  I moved away twice, and came back twice.  We’ll see where this goes.

I’m happiest in the mountains away from television and malls and magazines.  I prefer what I learn from nature over what I learn from the media or schools or most people.

I’m currently writing somewhere between Fort Worth and Albuquerque.  I feel like most of my life will be this way.  I’m literally up in the air but I might as well stay here; my thoughts are always up in the air.  I get lost in others’ stories and in others speaking.  Being in the air feels right, whether the air of my mind or the air below this plane.

I prefer dogs to people, always. Dogs are quiet and just want to walk and eat and love and be loved.  We could learn a lot from dogs.

I live in a world surrounded by love in a bigger world surrounded by greed and I’m no longer sure which world rules the other.

I was raised by teachers who care more about encouraging others than collecting anything of value and for that, I’ll always be thankful.

I can count my best friends on one hand and when I see them, I feel complete, whether I see them once a month or once every 16 months. I don’t think it’s by chance that I know them and I don’t think it’s by chance that we can pick up right where we started no matter how much time has passed. 

I use to think I wanted to travel the world and now I’m realizing more and more that I just want to travel the American southwest, and to be on my mat.  The places I go on my mat are often the most refreshing and liberating and whole.

I prefer women over men; not sexually, but in every other way.  And by women I mean only those who are willing to open all of their hearts and let their real selves pour out. 

When I was a kid, my drug of choice was books and drawing and creating and daydreaming and listening to music.  I loved to organize my things and preferred being in my room, alone. Much is the same today.

I eat vegan for my health and because I don’t think it’s ok to kill or mistreat animals for sport or food or to fill a craving.  I could write about this alone for hours but I realize these words divide; and so I often leave it as is.

I write this blog to share my stories and to help bring people together and to continue cooking healthy foods.  I write this simply to connect, and I hope to never stop.


Here’s my black bean soup, which I have been sitting on for months without posting. I have a lot of posts about childbearing and women’s rights and our legislation and monuments that I won’t bore or infuriate you with, so here you go. Those posts will be saved as drafts, for probably forever.

Enjoy –

Love to all who read this and to all who love to cook. Cooking brings us together, no matter who you voted for, last year, or any year. Love, Jen.

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Black Bean Soup

Lost Over Black Bean Soup

Prep Time 25 mins
Cook Time 1 hr
Total Time 1 hr 25 mins
Course Soups
Cuisine Vegan
Servings 1 huge pot of soup

Ingredients
  

  • 1 large white onion, chopped
  • 3 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 large red bell pepper, seeded and chopped
  • 1 large zucchini, diced
  • 2 tbsp. cumin
  • 1/4 tsp. black pepper
  • 1 tbsp. chili powder
  • 14.5 oz. can of diced tomatoes
  • 2 c. salsa, spicy
  • 4 c. vegetable broth
  • 3 c. water
  • 2 cans - 14.5 oz. black beans, rinsed and drained

Instructions
 

  • In a large soup pot, cook the onion and garlic for 5-7 minutes over medium heat. Add the red bell pepper, zucchini and spices, and cook for 10 minutes.
  • Add the tomatoes with juice, salsa, vegetable broth, water and black beans, and cook for a final 45 minutes, bringing to a boil and then simmering.
  • Cool slightly and serve, topped with avocado slices, vegan sour cream, lime juice and tortilla chips.
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