I like to give this mix as a gift, layering the beans in a clear pint jar and attaching the soup directions with a festive ribbon. You'll find it's perfect to serve year-round.
- 1 cup each dried black beans, dried yellow split peas, dried green split peas, dried black-eyed peas, dried pinto beans, dried kidney beans, dried great northern beans and dried lentils
- ADDITIONAL INGREDIENTS (for each batch):
- 1 smoked ham hock (about 1/2 pound)
- 1 large onion, chopped
- 2 medium carrots, chopped
- 1 celery rib, chopped
- 1 garlic clove, minced
- 1 to 2 teaspoons salt
- 1 teaspoon chili powder
- 1/4 teaspoon pepper
- 1-1/2 quarts water
- 1 can (8 ounces) tomato sauce
- Sort beans, peas and lentils; combine in a large bowl. Divide into four equal batches, 2 cups each. Store in airtight containers in a cool dry place for up to 6 months. Yield: 4 batches.
- To make one batch of soup: Rinse bean mixture with cold water. Place in a large saucepan; add water to cover by 2 in. Bring to a boil; boil for 2 minutes. Remove from the heat; cover and let soak for 1 to 4 hours or until beans are softened.
- Drain and rinse bean mixture, discarding liquid. Return bean mixture to pan; add remaining ingredients. Bring to a boil over medium-high heat. Reduce heat; cover and simmer for 3 hours or until beans are tender. Remove ham hock; cut meat into bite-size pieces and return to pan. Heat through. Yield: 10 cups per batch.
Originally published as Country Bean Soup in Home-Style Soups, Salad and Sandwiches Cookbook 1996, p9
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