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Wednesday, January 8, 2014

Crockpot: 15 Bean Soup



Recently, TheFoodCritic and I were talking about how food/smells can evoke memories, and we started talking things we ate as children.  I wondered which dishes our children would love about growing up with, and what recipes their future wives would be asking ME for!

When I asked if there was anything he particularly loved that his mother made, and he said "some kind of bean soup, with every bean you can think of... she put it in a crockpot, and I think there was ham involved".... I knew I had to try and find a way to recreate this for him.

TFC's mother passed away long before we met, so I was never able to meet or spend time with the  lady who made him this dinner, and obviously can't ask her for her recipe. I hope she's watching over us, and will smile when she sees how wonderful her son turned out to be. As it happens, TFC loved this soup. It wasn't like his Mom's (hers wasn't dark), but he loved the recipe and the effort anyway. Guess I'll keep trying...!

Source: Adapted from The Yummy Life


15 BEAN SOUP

INGREDIENTS:
  • 20oz 15 bean blend (use only the beans; discard seasoning packet if there is one), picked over and rinsed
  • 1 medium onion, minced
  • 6 cloves garlic, minced
  • 6 carrots, sliced into round (approx. 2 cups)
  • 4 stalks celery, chopped (approx. 1 cup)
  • 8 oz. ham steak, cut into 1/2" pieces (approx. 2 cups); omit for vegan/vegetarian version
  • 1 teaspoon ground black pepper
  • 1/4 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes  
  • 1 teaspoon dried thyme (you can also use italian seasoning)
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 1/4 cup low sodium soy sauce (may reduce to 1/8 cup or omit if lower sodium soup is desired)
  • 6 cups low sodium chicken broth (use vegetable broth for vegan/vegetarian version)
  • 1 (14.5 oz) can no salt diced tomatoes 

DIRECTIONS
Add beans to a large bowl or pot, and cover with 8 cups of water. Leave overnight.

Combine onion, garlic, carrots, celery, ham, black pepper, red pepper flakes, thyme, bay leaf, soy sauce, chicken broth, and diced tomatoes in crockpot - put in the fridge overnight too (saves time in the morning).

Add beans to crockpot, and cook on low for 8-10 hours.