Thursday, January 18, 2007

Not Your Mother's Slow Cooking Thursday

I bought this book last spring, and I have really loved the recipes that I tried out of it. Many other slow cooker cookbooks have the same old recipes that sometimes end up lacking in taste. Since it's (finally) cold here in Connecticut, I've been craving this type of food. Last night was chili, and today I was looking for a good bean soup, and I found it quickly here. I have never participated in Diary of a SAHM's Slow Cooking Thursday, although I've enjoyed recipes that I've seen at Laura's and Susanne's blogs. Since I had a success tonight, I thought I'd share. Click here for more recipes.

White Bean Soup with Bacon

from Not Your Mother's Slow Cooking Cookbook
2 cups dried navy or great northern beans, presoaked
2 to 3 strips of bacon, cooked until fat is rendered, but not crispy, and chopped, or 1 ham bone
1 small yellow onion, finely chopped
1 rib celery, minced
1 small carrot, minced
1 bouqui garni (1/2 tsp dried oregano, 3 sprigs fresh parsley, 1/2 sage leaf, and 1 bay leaf, wrapped in cheesecloth and tied with kitchen twine)**
6 cups chicken broth or water (I used 2 cans of broth and less than 1 can of water)
salt to taste
1/4 tsp freshly ground black pepper
1/2 cup heavy cream, optional (I did use this, and it was good, but might add less than 1/2 cup next time)

**I have never made a bouqui garni. I know it's not hard or complicated, but cheesecloth is not kitchen staple around here. I put in a whole dried bay leaf, and the parsley sprigs, which I fished out after cooking, and then just added some ground spices to the soup.

1. Combine the beans, bacon, onion, celery, carrot, bouquet garni, and broth in slow cooker. Cover and cook on low for 8 or 9 hours.

2. Remove the bouquet garni and bone, if using, and discard. Puree about 1/3 of the soup in a food processor or with handheld immersion blender. Season with salt, then add pepper and cream, if using, and continue to cook on Low 15 minutes longer.

More true confessions: I actually cooked this on the stove top, because I didn't decide to make it until after noon. It worked well, but I like that this recipe can truly cook all day, which some slow cooker recipes don't allow. I used a handheld potato-mashing tool to just mash some of it up.

I would post a picture, but the camera is, um, missing, and it looks like you would think white bean soup would look. The two-year-old didn't want to try it, and the 8-year-old didn't want to try it either, but once she did, she really liked it.


Susanne said...

Yum! This sounds wonderful. I'll definitely be giving it a try. We love bean soups in our family.

Sandra said...

I LOVE bean soups, by far my favorites and this one looks too good to be true LOL

Thank you so much for sharing, already printed it out, can't wait to try it :)

And I'm so glad you're joining us :)

Katrina said...

This sounds really good. Thanks for the recipe. And the book sounds good too. [Repeating to myself: I will not buy a book before March. I will not buy a book before March.] :)

org junkie said...

Except for the Hearty Hashbrown poor thing were eating it for days all by yourself...I still feel badly about that one!

Can you believe I've never heard of this book! I love that you didn't make the bouqui garni and just did your own thing...I would have done the same thing!
Thanks for the review..oh and the recipe.

Jennifer said...

Laura--Katrina loved that recipe (and so did her family). Not at all your fault. . . .

Dianne said...

This does sounds good. My husband would not touch bean soup if you paid him though, so I am going to pass this on to my mom and sis and hope that one of them will make it and share it with me! :0

Blessed Beyond Measure said...

Thanks Jennifer! I just left a comment on Unfinished Works site, telling her I needed 3 more good crockpot recipes - every Wednesday night to run through the month. (She had one for chicken tortilla soup). So I'll add this too - sounds wonderful, and not to fret - 2 year olds dont want to try anything unless it's not edible at all, like playdough, or catfood, or that type of thing.

Heather said...

Mmmm. This looks good. I'll have to try it.

Barb said...

This is unbelievable, Jennifer, truly spooky. Two seconds ago I googled navy bean soup because when I was grocery shopping today, I impulsively bought two bags of navy beans, thinking how much I want to make a big pot of this.

I love navy bean soup but I've never made it. So I googled it and none of the recipes I found sounded remotely good.

Then I come over here to visit you and my word, this is the recipe I'm looking for!

I can't believe this. Something very strange just happened because honestly, it hasn't been one minute since I tried to find a good recipe for navy beans on the web.


Kim said...

Holy Cow! We do have a lot in common; I started to buy this cookbook today, and then convinced myself to wait. I hadn't looked past the first couple of your entries until just now. Maybe we were separated at birth and can be on Jerry Springer sometime!