This came from a Cajun Cookbook that my friend had loaned to me. The prep. time does not include soaking the beans overnight.
- 2 cups dried red kidney beans, soaked overnight and drained
- 2 tablespoons butter
- 1 large onion, peeled and chopped
- 1 clove garlic, peeled and minced
- 1 stalk celery and leaves, chopped
- 1 carrot, peeled and chopped
- ½ lb smoked ham, cut into large chunks
- 1 large ham bone, if available
- 2 quarts water
- 1 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce
- 2 tablespoons chopped fresh parsley
- ½ teaspoon dried thyme
- 2 bay leaves
- 2 tablespoons lemon juice
- ⅛ teaspoon dried hot red pepper flakes
- salt and pepper
- chopped fresh parsley (to garnish)
- Put the beans in a saucepan, cover with fresh water and bring to a boil.
- Boil for 10 minutes and drain.
- Set aside.
- Melt the butter in a dutch oven or very large saucepan and cook the onion, garlic, celery and carrot, covered, until softened.
- Add the beans, ham, ham bone, water, Worcestershire sauce, parsley, thyme, bay leaves, lemon juice, pepper flakes, and salt and pepper to taste.
- Bring to a boil and simmer 2 hours or until beans are very soft.
- Discard the ham bone.
- Scoop out the chunks of ham and reserve.
- Press the soup through a fine sieve and return it to the saucepan.
- Discard the solids in the sieve.
- Cut the chunks of ham into small dice and add to the soup.
- Reheat, and taste and adjust the seasonings.
- Serve hot, sprinkled with a little parsley.
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