Wednesday, May 2, 2012

Ham & Bean Soup

I don't know why, but when it hits 85+ degrees outside I tend to make a big ol' pot of soup. It happens fairly regularly. I think it has a lot to do with the fact that I simply love soup. It's easy, it's filling, and it gets better as it sits.

This recipe is no exception- it was fantastic yesterday, but for lunch today it was the bees knees (my hubby's words, not mine LOL). The flavors had all blended overnight to make this yummy soup over the top.

If you are a winter only soup eater, tuck this one away to try. If you are like me and eat soup no matter what the temperature outside may be- give this one a whirl!

Here's to you and your culinary adventures, friends. Cheers!

Ham & Bean Soup

1 cup dry navy beans, rinsed
8 cups water

1-2 cups chicken broth
1 TBS chicken bouillon base
1 meaty ham bone + 1 cup shredded or diced ham
4 strips smokey bacon, diced
1 medium onion, diced
2 cloves garlic, minced
2 stalks celery, diced
2 bay leaves
1/2 tsp dry Italian seasoning

3-4 carrots, diced
1 (4oz) can tomato sauce

Cover rinsed beans with 8 cups of water in a large pot. Bring to a boil. Simmer 2 minutes. Turn off heat, cover and let sit for 1 hour.

In a skillet, brown and crisp bacon. Remove from pan and drain. Add the diced onion to the same skillet. Saute 3 minutes.

To the beans and water, add all remaining ingredients EXCEPT the tomato sauce and carrots. Cover, and simmer for 1 hour.

Add carrots. Cover and simmer 1 hour.

Add tomato sauce, salt and pepper to taste.

If desired, slightly mash some of the beans with a potato masher. Serve with a piece of corn bread for a hearty meal.

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