Soups and Stews, Uncategorized

Ham and Bean Soup

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I woke up this morning and it went from 73 degree F yesterday to 40 degrees F today. Huge difference. I’ve been cold all day. I decided it’s a soup type day. I put some stuff in my bread machine to whip up some bread. Then I started my beans. I’ve pretty much decided I need some warm comfort food. I want to give you a few tips that you may or may not already know….First off. If you’re like me you may forget to put your beans in the water to sit for that 8 hours. If you do don’t worry, you can still do this. Here’s how:

First you want to put your beans in your stock pot and cover them in water (at least 2 inches above the beans). Put on high to bring to a rolling boil. Cook for 2 minutes. Remove from the head and cover. I usually let it sit for about 1 or 2 hours and it’s ready to go.

My next tip is adding salt. I encourage you not to add any salt in the beginning at all. Ham hocks can be salty sometimes. If you don’t use low sodium chicken broth you also have that salt content. You would want to let the soup be finished, taste it and then add your salt or it could be inedible. Enjoy this soup ya’ll!

1 1/2 cups dried great northern beans

4 meaty ham hocks

4 cups water

32 oz low sodium chicken broth

1 cup chopped onion

1 1/2 cups chopped carrot

3 cloves minced garlic

1/2 teaspoon dried thyme

1/4 teaspoon black pepper

1 bay leaf

Salt to taste

Separate beans to ensure no rocks or twigs, etc. Place into a bowl cover them with cool water. Check on them periodically so they have water in them always.  I let sit for at least 8 hours prior to cooking. Drain water. Place in a stockpot. Add ham hocks, water, celery, onion, carrot, garlic, thyme, pepper, and bay leaf to pot with beans. Bring to boil. Cover and simmer until ham hocks fall apart. Should be about 2 hours. Discard bay leaf and remove ham hocks from soup. Cut meat from bones and put into soup. Add salt as desired.

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