August 6th, 2008
The Navy bean is a white bean that is also sometimes known as the great northern bean – whatever the name you may see on the package at the store it is the small white bean one. Your going to need a bag of those, I think they are about a pound in weight (the bag, not the bean). You will also need some ham hock – make sure its smoked as it adds some great flavor, couple large carrots, a large yellow onion (not the sweet kind), 4 cloves of garlic, about 6 inches of a celery stalk, salt and pepper.
OK, empty the beans into a large pot half full of water. Soak the beans for about 6-8 hours – this accomplishes a couple of important things. First it helps reconstitute the bean and second it goes a long way towards making sure you don’t kill your pets and house plants with a powerful and continuous release of poisonous gas after your soup consumption. Drain the beans into a strainer.
Wash out the large pot, we are going to use it again – less dishes for the wife to wash, BROWNIE POINT! Fill the pot to about just over half full and add the reconstituted beans and ham hock – I suggest about a pound and a half minimum, I like a lot of ham (your call) – then add a couple of pinches of salt – if your salt is in a shaker, shake enough salt until just before you think your brain is going to cry, “that’s too much!” Now bring the stuff to boil, then reduce it to a simmer with the cover on and let it cook for about an hour or so.
Now don’t just go sit down and watch TV for the hour, you still have some work to do. Chop up the carrots, onion and celery – place all of it in a bowl and let it sit. When your hour is up you now want to chop up (mince) the garlic cloves, make sure you take the skin off first, then in a small frying pan on medium heat “toast” the garlic.
Now that your hour is up, add the cut up vegetables and toasted garlic to your bean brew. Stir it up with a little bit of pepper to taste, keep in mind your kids might not like pepper as much as you do, then let it cook another 40-50 minutes (your carrots should be tender).
The ham should be “falling off the bone” tender at this point, if not help it along a little and cut it up into smaller pieces. I suggest you serve the soup with a good hard crust bread.
The flavors are amazing in this soup and believe it of not it is even better the second day!
Read Comments (3)