Get Smart...Eat More Dry Beans
June 19, 2006
This soup is similar to Senate Bean Soup. It is very simple to make when you use baby carrots, a slice of ham and pre-cooked bacon bits. A great homemade soup made by simmering simple ingredients together for several hours.
I used dry cannellini or white kidney beans. They soaked easily to a cream colored, large kidney size and cooked to a creamy consistency. The only brand of canned cannellini beans I found in my grocery stores was Progresso. Canned beans will work just as well as the dry beans in a lot less time. This recipe has no acid or calcium ingredients so the soaked beans may be combined with the other ingredients and successfully cooked to tender. In fact, if you boil the dry beans for 10 minutes or use canned beans, you could combine all the ingredients in a crockpot and let this one-dish meal cook all day. A pound of ham didnt seem like much meat for 10 or 12 servings, but the soup had plenty of ham in each bowl and bite. (See picture.)
If you wish, substitute a pound of regular carrots, peeled and sliced for the baby carrots. The quick and easy way-- bacon bits may be replaced with 12 16 ounces of bacon, fried, drained and diced.
After soaking the beans overnight, it took me 15 minutes to assemble the soup using the pre-prepared ingredients and set it to simmer on the range top. I set the stove at 2, medium low, and came home 2 ½ hours later to find it steaming and just about simmering. Since it had not boiled 10 minutes, I mashed a bean and found that it wasnt tender. (Dont ever taste a kidney bean until it has been boiled a minimum of 10 minutes. They are not edible.) I turned the burner up to simmer for a half an hour and everything was tender and ready for lunch.
Hadrava Cannellini Soup
14 cups soup, 10 12 servings
2 cups dry cannellini beans and 10 cups cold water OR 3 15.5-ounce cans cannellini beans
1 stalk celery
1 pound baby carrots
1-pound boneless smoked ham
1 3-ounce package real bacon bits
1 Tablespoon season salt
1 Tablespoon basil
1 Tablespoon liquid smoke
Ground black pepper
1. Pour 10 cups cold water in a 4 8 quart pot. Heat to boiling.
2. Sort and rinse dry beans. Add to boiling water, boil 2 3 minutes. Remove from heat, cover and set aside to soak for 1 to 16 hours.
3. Drain beans, rinse beans and pot. Return beans to pot. Add cold water to cover the beans by 3 inches. Stir and set on the stove to heat.
4. Dice celery and onion. Slice baby carrots into four or five pieces. Cut ham into ½ inch cubes. Add vegetables, ham, bacon and seasonings. Add more water to cover all the ingredients by 1 inch.
5. Stir and simmer for 3 hours. Mash a bean with a spoon to check if it is tender. If not, turn up burner and simmer another ½ hour. Adjust seasonings to personal taste. Serve hot with crackers and fruit.
6. Refrigerate or freeze leftovers.