Bean Soup

Happy Valentine’s Day!

Sadly, I’m spending it with a tissue box and a mug of tea while I try to get over a nasty cold. But, I did do some cooking this afternoon…

Ages ago (OK, it was actually just about a month ago), my mom sent me a recipe for Calico Ham and Bean Soup from some magazine she was reading after I lamented that I would not have any of her bean soup this winter. My mom always uses the leftover ham from Christmas day to make a really tasty bean soup, and I have never attempted to replicate it or make my own.

My mom, in an attempt to rectify the situation, sent me this recipe a day or two after our phone conversation about it.  But I had no occasion to make it over the past few weeks, until yesterday, when through my sniffles and coughing, I determined that all I really wanted was soup.

Luckily, I had a leftover ham steak from a BOGO at Winn Dixie a while back, so I just needed to pick up the beans in addition to my regular weekly grocery items.

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Ingredients: 1 pound three bean mix (If you can’t find, use one pound navy beans, one pound kidney beans and one pound lima beans. Then take a third of each of these and mix), 6 cups water, 2 cups cooked ham cut into bite size pieces, 1 cup chopped onion, 1 cup chopped carrot, 1 stalk of chopped celery plus leaves (I forgot to get celery at the store, so no celery in mine), 1 to 2 tsp oregano, 1 to 2 tsp basil, 1 to 2 tsp rosemary, 1 to 2 tsp garlic powder, 1/2 tsp black pepper, and two bay leaves.

Directions: Rinse beans in colander and drain. Combine ingredients in crock pot and cover. Cook either eight to 10 hours on low or four to five hours on high. Discard bay leaves before serving.

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The soup is currently in the crock pot, set to be done at about 7 p.m. I’m feeling really hopeful about it, so hopefully it’s exactly what I want. But I’m going to have to wait about 3 1/2 hours to find out. Booooo.

UPDATE: I had a few spoonfuls last night after the soup finished cooking.It is flavorful, but something seemed missing. The recipe said you could use 6 cups water or 3 cups water, 3 cups chicken broth. I used just water, but I think using the chicken broth might be the better way to go based on the flavorings of the soup. But still, a pretty hearty, good winter soup.

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