Tomato Bean Soup

Salt is not an ingredient in this awesome soup. You’ll get plenty of salt from some of the included ingredients…

2 15oz cans of beans (white beans)
2 15 oz cans of diced tomatoes (no salt)
1 15 oz can of Peas or Corn (low/no salt)
1 7 oz can of tomato sauce (no salt)
3/4 to 1 box of elbow macaroni (or whatever small pasta you prefer. Ditalini would work well too.)
16 oz of Chicken or Beef Stock (low/no salt)
12 oz of water
3 tablespoons of Frank’s Red Hot
3 tablespoons of Paprika
3 Tablespoons of Black Pepper
1 tablespoon of Marjoram
3 Smoked Hamhocks
about 4 to 6 strips of Bacon, diced
1 small onion, finely diced
4 stalks of Celery diced
3 medium carrots, cut into dime/quarter size slices
5 large Button Mushrooms, sliced or diced

In a Soup Pot, toss in the bacon, onions, celery, carrots and half of the mushrooms. Sweat these down until the bacon gives up a wee bit of grease and the onions become translucent.

Add in the Ham hocks now. 2 or 3 is sufficient. You are basically going to render these to near fall apart consistency. It takes TIME. You are basically rendering the flavor from the hammocks into the stock.

Now add in the Chicken or Beef Stock AND the water. Bring to a boil. Once boiling, lower the temp to a rough simmer. You will allow this mixture to simmer for up to 3 hours.

After up to 3 hours, REMOVE the ham hocks and SLICE off the skin and any meat. Return that to the pot.

With the mixture at a simmer, add in the TOMATO SAUCE and 2 cans of tomatoes. Add in the remainder of the mushrooms and all associated spices (marjoram, Frank’s red hot, black pepper). Add in the pasta.

Now allow this to all steep together for about 30 minutes. The pasta will soften.

Ladle to a bowl and serve with some warm corn bread.

This keeps amazingly well, and tastes better the second or third day.


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