Sunday, October 19, 2008

Vegetarian 15-bean soup

I love the 15-bean soup mixes you can find at the store, but most of them come with a ham or "ham" flavoring packet. After a few unsuccessful experiments, I finally found the right mix of seasonings to make a delicious vegan soup!

In classic Lazy Vegetarian style, I use a crockpot to make this a minimally hands-on recipe.
  • 1 (16-20 oz.) bag of 15-bean soup mix
  • 1 large onion, chopped
  • 2 tsp. minced garlic (I use the refrigerated kind, but you could use fresh if you're ambitious)
  • 1 tsp. chili powder
  • 1 can diced tomatoes (preferably no salt added)
  • 3 bay leaves
  • 1 tsp. dried rosemary (crush between fingers before adding to release the flavor)
  • 1 tsp. black pepper
  • salt (to taste)
  • 2 tbsp. extra virgin olive oil
  • 2 vegetarian bouillon cubes OR 2 tbsp. McKay's chicken seasoning
Discard the seasoning packet from the soup mix. Soak beans overnight in 8 cups water. In the morning, drain and rinse.

In the crockpot, combine beans, 8 cups water, onion, and garlic. Cook on low approx. 8 hours (longer shouldn't hurt as long as you have enough water). About 30 minutes before serving, add the remaining seasonings and turn crockpot to high.

Future variations I'd like to try:
  • omit tomatoes and use diced potatoes instead (you'd have to add them earlier in the cooking process, I think)
  • use lemon juice instead of the chili powder - or in addition