A hearty soup does not require a dozen or more ingredients and can take less then 10 minutes to put together. This classic soup uses up leftovers from a ham dinner for a simple and easy meal tomorrow night.
3 c Water
2 c dry Navy Beans
2 c sliced Carrots
1 c Sliced celery
1/2 c diced Onions
1 tsp minced garlic
Salt and Pepper
Sort through the dry beans looking for stones. Do not think you can skip this step because they look okay. I found 2 when I made this batch of soup.
Place the bone in the slow cooker. I intentionally leave some meat on it when I slice up my hams. Cover the bone with the vegetables, garlic, dried beans and water. Slice the vegetables about 1/4 inch thick. DO NOT ADD SALT! Adding salt now will prevent the beans from getting soft. Cook on low for 6 to 8 hours or high for 4 to 5 ours.
Give the soup a taste and season with salt and pepper according to taste. Depending on how salty the ham is you will need to add more or less.
The bone needs to be removed about 30 minutes before you intend on serving. Place it on a cutting bone and allow to cool long enough to handle, about 10 minutes. Pull or cut off any remaining bits of ham that are left on the bone and return to the pot. If you have a dog, they enjoy a good ham bone, just make sure it does not have any sharp edges. Depending on how much ham was on the bone and how much you like in your soup, add some more 20 minutes before serving. Serve with your favorite bread.
A variation is to use a 15 bean mix. The process is the same and the variety of beans add a lot of color, texture and nutrients.