Hello WEEC listeners-
Today's recipe is the one I took my pastor for his birthday.
HAM AND BEAN SOUP
1 lb. dried beans (pinto or navy)
1 c. chopped celery
A meaty ham bone or smoked ham hocks
1 large onion, finely chopped
1 T. chicken soup base or to taste
1-2 c. ham, chopped
1 tsp. ham soup base or drippings from leftover ham
2 T. dried parsley
1/2 c. shredded carrot
2 cloves garlic, minced
1.2 tsp. pepper
Wash and pick through beans discarding any blemished or shriveled ones. Place in a large bowl and cover beans with water, about 3 quarts. Allow to sit overnight.
For a quicker method, you may also place beans in pot, cover with water and bring to a boil. Remove from heat and allow to sit for 2 hours.
Drain soaked beans and cover with fresh water, about 2 inches higher than level of beans. Add the ham bone, vegetables, and seasonings.
Heat to boiling, then reduce heat and simmer until beans are tender, about 1-2 hours. Taste the broth and adjust seasonings during cooking by adding additional soup base or garlic to taste. Add additional water, if needed.
Soup should be salty enough due to the soup base and ham. Serve with hot corn bread. This soup may also be cooked for several hours in a crockpot and it also freezes well.
Note: I purposefully buy ham with a bone just for this dish. The little bits of meat leftover from a ham dinner also find their way into the soup pot along with the
concentrated drippings in the bottom of the pan. This is what I consider real comfort food.