Friday, March 16, 2012

366 Photo Project - Photo 25: Navy Bean, Potato & Ham Soup

It's been a while since I've posted. Some of you may be wondering whatever happened to my 366 Photo Project photos... Well I am still taking a photo almost everyday, but I've given up trying to take one with my DSLR camera because I just don't have the time to process everything. On top of all that, I don't always have it with me and sometimes the photo just isn't important enough for me to haul out the camera. So I'll be posting photos still and just labeling them accordingly. Hope that makes sense? 
I first stumbled onto the How Sweet It Is blog about a year ago. Jessica reminds me of my BFF Liz. She hates veggies and loves bacon. She started off with a lot more sweet baking recipes but now she's posting a lot more savory ones as well. Her photos are gorgeous and she's a hilarious and witty writer as well. She posted a recipe for Mother Lovett's Bean Soup a few weeks ago and I've been itching to try it ever since. The problem was I couldn't find a dang ham with the bone still in it. Actually, it was hard to find any decent ham at all! I finally gave up last week and bought a regular hunk of smoked ham from the grocery store. 
I didn't exactly follow the recipe to the T... When do Jamie and I ever do that anyways? The biggest pot we have is the enameled cast iron dutch oven pot from Costco so I knew I wouldn't be able to make a pot of soup the size that she posted. I started off with cutting up a couple onions and while I was trying to cut up the garlic and ham, the onions sweated down a bit too much and started browning, hence why my soup is a different color than Jessica's. I didn't want to measure the navy beans so I just threw in 1/2 the bag. I also just used one container of veggie stock and topped off the rest of the pot with tap water. It sat simmering on the stove top without the lid on for about an hour because I realized that there was too much liquid and the potatoes wouldn't fit if I tried to add them later. You can see from the picture that quite a bit of the water boiled off. It made the house smell delicious! 
After about 1.5 hrs of simmering, I added the potatoes and let it mingle for another hour or so. I think in total it had about 3 hours of cooking time. Jessica's recipe calls for like 6-7 hours of boiling but I found with this smaller batch, it didn't need that. The beans were dry so if we were to use canned beans, it would easily be done in an hour. We also didn't have any yukon potatoes so we just used red skinned ones. The soup was very filling and made great leftovers. If I were to make this soup again, I'd trade out the navy beans. It gave the soup a bit slimy of a texture that I had to overlook. Overall, a simple soup to make that warms the home and body. 

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