Erin Lembke's take on this hearty classic is a thick tomato-based soup loaded with veggies and well-seasoned with herbs. Cayenne pepper gives it some zip. "I always make up a soup recipe as I go along," Erin writes from Bothell, Washington. "My husband, who doesn't usually care much for soup, really likes this one."
Recommended: 51 Cozy Slow Cooker Soups
- 3/4 cup dried navy beans
- 1-1/2 pounds smoked ham hocks
- 6 cups water
- 4 celery ribs, sliced
- 4 carrots, halved and sliced
- 1 large onion, chopped
- 1 cup fresh green beans, cut into 1-inch pieces
- 1 can (14-1/2 ounces) diced tomatoes
- 1-1/2 teaspoons garlic powder
- 1-1/2 teaspoons dried basil
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 1 teaspoon paprika
- 1/2 teaspoon dried oregano
- 1/4 teaspoon each dried thyme, white pepper and Liquid Smoke
- 1/8 teaspoon cayenne pepper
- 2 cups chopped cabbage
- Sort beans and rinse with cold water. Place beans in a Dutch over or soup kettle; add water to cover by 2 in. Bring to a boil; boil for 2 minutes. Remove from the heat; cover and let stand for 1 hour. Drain and rinse beans, discarding liquid.
- In a Dutch oven or soup kettle, place ham hocks and water. Cover and bring to a boil. Reduce heat; simmer for 1 hour. Add beans; simmer 1 hour longer or until meat and beans are tender. Remove from heat. Cool slightly. Remove ham hocks. Cover and refrigerate ham hocks and soup.
- Remove meat from bones; discard bones. Set meat aside. Remove fat from broth. Return broth with the beans and meat to pan. Add the celery, carrots, onion and green beans. Bring to a boil over medium heat. Reduce heat; simmer, uncovered, for 10 minutes. Add tomatoes and seasonings; cook for 10 minutes. Add cabbage; cook 35 minutes longer or until vegetables are tender. Yield: 7 servings.
Originally published as Ham and Bean Soup in Light & Tasty February/March 2005, p63
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