15 Bean Soup ~A winter favorite!!

This is my favorite dish to cook on a cold day. We are not quite there yet here in Arizona, but I figured all my friends to the North are going to be anxious to get started on some cold weather dishes. This is also one of those that gets better the next day. It has a rich buttery flavor that lends itself to a good piece of bread. I will freeze 1/2 of it and put it back in the crock pot on another day, and it is just as good, if not better. Because it does so well in the freezer I will double or triple it in a large stock pot and freeze in serving sizes. Usually I get the Ham Bone at Christmas or Thanksgiving dinner after all the spirals have been eaten and use that, which has gotten me some funny looks from my aunts “Hey, you gonna need that Ham Bone?”. If I do not have that I use hocks or bits of ham and bacon, as I did this time. The type and amount of ham is up to you and of course bacon is optional. The base is really easy and great for working families.

15 Bean Soup w/ Ham Hocks & Bacon

1 Package of Hurst’s HamBeens
1 Diced yellow onion -no need to dice it in small pieces
3 large cloves of raw garlic
4 smoked Ham Hocks (look around the meat section or ask the butcher, they are there)
1 package of bacon ends and pieces
1 tsp cayenne pepper

Directions – soak beans over night, make sure they are covered in about 3-4 inches of water, beans will expand. The next day rinse and add ham hocks and bacon to the crock pot and add the beans over them. Save ham packet that comes with the beans aside. Add Chopped onion, cloves of garlic cayenne pepper and then cover in water. Cook on high all day, stirring occasionally. Once water is to a boil add ham packet and stir. Depending on your crock pot you may need to add water, you want a soup consistency, but not watery. Once the beans are soft and the ham has fallen off the bone, remove bones and it is ready to serve. Enjoy!

                                               Ready to eat

Beans soaking