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Senate Navy Bean Soup

1 1/2 pounds dried navy beans
3 Tbsp olive oil
3 cups diced onions
1 cup diced carrots
1 cup diced celery
1 Tbsp finely chopped garlic
1 cup diced potatoes
1 pound smoked ham hock
bouquet garni (parsley sprigs, bay leaf, thyme sprigs, large twist lemon peel)
Salt and freshly ground pepper to taste

Soak and wash beans and place in a large pot. Add water to cover
by 4-5 inches. Soak overnight. Drain beans and run them under hot
water, then return to pot and cover with 3 quarts of water. In a
skillet, saute vegetables in olive oil until tender. Add to the
pot with the ham hock and bouquet garni and cook soup at a simmer,
covered for about 3 hours. Remove ham hock and bouquet garni. With
a food mill or processor, puree about 6 cups of the beans with a
little liquid, add back to the soup in the pot. Cut meat from ham
hock into small pieces and return to pot. Season to taste with salt
and pepper. Makes about 8-10 servings.


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