Rinse and soak the beans in water for 6 hours or overnight.
3 cups pinto beans
Preheat a large heavy bottom dutch oven over medium-low heat and saute the onion in a light drizzle of olive oil until translucent. (Make it WFPB oil free by using a splash of water instead).
1 small yellow onion
Stir in the carrots and garlic and give everything a good stir to coat.
3 carrots, 8 cloves garlic
Add the soaked and rinsed pinto beans together with the bay leaves, thyme + kombu if using. Cover with 8 cups of filtered water and bring to a rapid boil ( the beans should be covered by 2-3 inches of liquid). Turn the heat down to medium low and cover with a tight lid.
3 cups pinto beans, 3 leaves bay, 8 sprigs thyme, filtered water, 1 strip Kombu
Keep the soup at a constant bubble for 45 minutes stirring a couple of times. Mix in the Mexican seasonings, oregano, sweet and smoked paprika, cover and simmer for another 30 minutes or so until the beans have completely softened and are cooked through.
2 tbsp Mexican seasonings, 1 tbsp dry oregano, 2 tsp smoked paprika, 1 tsp sweet paprika
About 5 minutes before the soup is done remember to season to taste with smoked sea salt and black pepper. Remove from heat and discard the bay leaves and thyme sprigs. If extra smokiness is desired you can add a couple of teaspoons of liquid smoke at this point.
1 pinch sea salt, 1 pinch freshly cracked black pepper
Serve with sliced avocado, a good squeeze of lime, onion chives and slices of spicy chili pepper.
1/2 cup fresh onion chives, 1 green chili pepper, 1 lime