This is a soup that my mom made a lot when I was growing up and I love it. It is such a comfort food for me! Unfortunately, Eric is not fond of beans so I don't get to make this soup very often. But every once in a while I just do it anyway - and Eric is so good - he never complains. So here it is:
1/4 cup of each of the following:
black eyed peas
small lima beans
great northern beans
butter beans or large limas
split green peas
Wash beans thoroughly, place in large container, cover with water and add 2 tablespoons salt. Soak overnight. In the morning, drain, add 2 quarts of water and about 1/2 lb ham or ham hocks. Bring to boil. Stir often. Simmer 2 to 2 1/2 hours. Then add:
1 large onion, chopped
1 teaspoon chili powder
1 large can tomatoes (29 oz)
juice of 1 lemon
Salt and pepper to taste
Simmer another 30 minutes. Serves 12 generously.
Note the serving size - half the recipe for a smaller serving size.
I bought a bean mix in the bulk section at Winco - very cheap and it doesn't have all the same exact beans as the recipe but it's close enough - you can pretty much use whatever you want.
My mom always used ham hocks in the recipe - I prefer it with actual ham. I found a half ham on sale at Winco and for dinner last night we had ham and potatoes - then I packaged up the rest of the ham (3 meals worth) and put it in the freezer, I pulled off what was left on the bone and put it in my soup along with the bone. I'll pull the bone out when I am ready to serve the soup.
I use onion powder instead of an onion
This can also be done in the crock pot - soak the beans overnight - in the morning put them in the crock pot on high with the ham and water. After about 2 hours, turn down to low and add the other ingredients. I don't think it is possible to overcook - mine has been in the crockpot all afternoon and it looks and smells wonderful. We'll dish it up when Eric gets home.