Thursday, December 20, 2012

Lucy Burdette's 15 Bean Soup

When I lived in Tennessee many years ago (that's me on the left with my pal Carolyn on the right,) it was common for folks to serve "soup beans" and corn bread for supper. This is basically just pinto beans and onions cooked for hours until soft, and then garnished with more onions, cheese, and maybe some homemade pickle relish and Tabasco sauce.

However, my husband is not a big fan. But he does love this fifteen bean soup, which is easy, tasty and filling--good for a night when you've been busy with holiday preparations or don't feel like cooking something fancy.

INGREDIENTS:

1 lb 15-Bean soup mix (this is in the dried bean section in your supermarket. Please throw out the little packet of so-called "ham seasoning"--it's mostly salt and preservatives)
32 oz box natural beef broth
1 can diced tomatoes with green chilis (for a little zip)
1 onion, chopped
4 stalks celery with leaves, washed and chopped
water as needed
cheese for garnish

Start by opening the bag of beans and quickly sorting through to be sure you don't have any little pebbles etc. Wash the beans well, dump them in a big pot, and cover with about an inch of water. Bring to boil, simmer for a few minutes, then turn off the heat and cover. Let them sit about an hour. 

Meanwhile, chop your vegetables and saute briefly. 

Turn the heat back on the beans and add the stock. Cook until the beans are starting to get soft--this might take two hours. Test a big bean now and then to see how they are coming.

Then add in the tomatoes, onion, and celery, and simmer another half hour to 45 minutes.  Add water as necessary to keep the liquid level just above the beans

When the soup is done, serve in bowls with lots of cheddar cheese, a green salad and corn bread or biscuits. (Actually, the biscuits to the left are cheese and cornmeal scones. I'll give you that recipe in the new year...)



Y'all come back now! And happy holidays! Hope you get a few mysteries in your stocking:).

You can read more about the Key West food critic mysteries, including AN APPETITE FOR MURDER and DEATH IN FOUR COURSES at www.lucyburdette.com or on Facebook.

16 comments:

  1. I was raised in Tennessee so I know soup beans with onion. We always had fried potatoes/onions with ours. Granny also always had homemade bread AND cornbread. Yumm....such good memories.

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    1. Hey Sue, where in Tennessee? And were the fried potatoes on the side?

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    2. I grew up near Kingsport and went to school in Knoxville. Fried potatoes with onions were always on the side. Daddy mixed his together though. Never could figure that one out, but he also liked crumbled cornbread soaked in butter milk...go figure. Where in Tennessee did you live?

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  2. Oh wow, now I'm hungry for bean soup. I usually use chicken stock, but now I want to try it with beef. I'll want to try cheese scones, too!

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    1. I'm betting either chicken or beef would be delicious Nancy:)

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  3. I got crazy one year and took that idea a bit too far. I had a lot of turkey bones and carcass left over after Thanksgiving one year. I made a stock from it, and then added red beans, pink beans, white beans, and barley to it... then added diced carrots, onions and parsnips.... and for good measure I shredded the leftover turkey and tossed that in also. That soup with garlic bread was also a meal by itself.

    I'll try your version out very soon since I've copied it to my recipe folder.

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    1. MMMMMMmmmmm, Nora, your turkey carcass soup sounds yummy!

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    2. It was so well received that it's still part of my soup lineup. Although these days I buy turkey thighs on the bone. Debone them and use the meat for Shawarma (Middle East dish) and save the bones up. When I have 3 or 4 gallon freezer bags of bones I buy 6 very large turkey necks.. from there the recipe is the same.

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  4. Looks yummy! And fun for the holidays. Thank you, Lucy!
    Merry, merry

    Daryl/Avery

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  5. I'm a Tennessean, too. We might have had turnip greens on the side. My mother made cornbread every day, except Sunday, when I was growing up, and biscuits.

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    1. Oh you lucky girl! From Tennessee to Rome??

      Definitely turnip greens on the side, with a little splash of hot sauce...

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  6. First of all, I really love that photo with your friend. It's beautiful, Lucy! And I always, always feel better after eating a bean dish--the nutrition, no doubt, but there's something so wholesome and satisfying, too. Thanks for sharing, Marc and I will def. be making this! ~ Cleo

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    1. thank you Cleo!:) We all looked cute thirty years ago!LOL And Carolyn's husband is a terrific photographer...

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  7. I just got a ham hock with a bunch of goodies (meats and cheeses)as a gift for my husband. I think all these beans are calling to it.

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    1. that sounds perfect Libby---is the ham hock a Christmas present??

      That reminds me of the year I asked my mother for a tailor's ham for Christmas, as I was very interested in sewing. Signals were crossed and I got a package of Taylor's ham in my stocking!

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