Need a gift for your neighbor or child's teacher? Here's a nice double-duty recipe - Soup in a Jar. If you want to make a fancier gift than just a jar full of beans, put the jar in a basket with a couple of soup mugs/bows, wooden stirring spoon, napkins, bottle of wine, and the can of diced tomatoes. You could even toss in a soup ladle, if you wanted to. Be sure to type up the recipe card and include it.
I made this soup on Friday night and it's really good. I'll probably be giving away a couple of jars to friends and family this year.
Country Six-Bean Soup Mix
Ingredients for jar:
½ cup dried red beans
½ cup dried navy beans
½ cup dried pinto beans
½ cup dried baby lima beans
½ cup dried kidney beans
½ cup dried Great Northern beans
2 bay leaves
2 tbsp dried minced onion
1 tbsp dried parsley flakes
2 tsp beef bouillon granules
1 tsp dried minced garlic
1 tsp dried thyme leaves
½ tsp dried oregano leaves
½ tsp black pepper
¼ tsp red pepper flakes
Directions for putting jar together:
Layer beans in a 1-quart food storage jar with tight-fitting lid. Slide bay leaves down the side of the jar. Place spices in a small baggie. Close tightly with a twist tie. Place bag on top of beans in jar and close jar tightly.
Cover the top of the jar with a decorative piece of fabric and attach recipe card with ribbon.
Recipe Card to include with jar:
1 jar Country-Six Bean Soup Mix
4 or 5 cups water
1 can (28-oz) diced tomatoes with Italian seasonings
8 oz smoked sausage links or 2 smoked ham hocks
Hot pepper sauce or red wine vinegar (optional)
1) Remove seasoning packet and bay leaves, set aside.
2) Place beans in large bowl or pot; cover with water and let soak 6-8 hours or over night. Drain beans, discard water.
3) Combine soaked beans, 4-5 cups water, tomatoes, sausage, contents of seasoning packet and bay leaves in a Dutch oven. Bring to a boil. Cover, reduce heat and simmer 1 ½ to 2 hours, until beans are tender. Season to taste with hot pepper sauce if desired.
Makes 8 to 10 servings.
Note: In the picture, I included the bay leaf for contrast, but bay leaves should be discarded and never eaten, as the spine can do bad things to you.
“I am not alone at all, I thought. I was never alone at all. And that, of course, is the message of Christmas. We are never alone. Not when the night is darkest, the wind coldest, the world seemingly most indifferent. For this is still the time God chooses.” ~ Taylor Cadwell