I know you'll come to really on this recipe like I have. It's loaded with beans, meat and flavor for a really stick-to-the-ribs meal.—Joy Rackham, Chimacum, Washington
- 4 cups (2 pounds) dried black beans
- 2 celery ribs, chopped
- 1 medium onion, chopped
- 1/2 cup chopped green pepper
- 1 tablespoon canola oil
- 3 garlic cloves, minced
- 2 smoked ham hocks
- 7 cups water
- 2 cans (4 ounces each) chopped green chilies
- 2 teaspoons chicken bouillon granules
- 1/2 teaspoon sugar
- 3 bay leaves
- 1 teaspoon chili powder
- 1 teaspoon ground cumin
- Pinch pepper
- 1 pound fresh kielbasa or Polish sausage links
- 1 can (14-1/2 ounces) diced tomatoes, undrained
- Soak beans according to package directions. Drain and rinse beans, discarding liquid.
- In a Dutch oven, saute the celery, onion and green pepper in oil until tender. Add garlic; cook 1 minute longer. Add the beans, ham hocks, water, chilies, bouillon, sugar and seasonings. Bring to a boil. Reduce heat; cover and simmer for 1-1/2 hours or until beans are tender.
- Meanwhile, in a large skillet, cook kielbasa until a thermometer reads 160°. Cut in half lengthwise; slice into 1/4-in. pieces. Add kielbasa and tomatoes to soup.
- Remove ham hocks; cool slightly. Remove meat from bones; cut into cubes. Return to soup and heat through. Discard bay leaves. Yield: 12 servings (3 quarts).
Originally published as Black Bean Soup in Taste of Home December/January 1997, p41
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