Like the title? That’s what my grandmother, Micky, used to call this soup. The only thing is, the little package of smoked ham hocks I bought for this put me back $7.00, so I’m not so sure it applies any more. Maybe we should call it “Doing Okay if I Can Afford $7 for Ham Hocks” Soup.
I had a hankering for this yesterday. And yes, that’s something else Grandma taught me.
noun: a longing; craving.
Poor Soup (a.k.a. Navy Bean Soup)
- 2 cups small white navy beans, picked over and rinsed
- enough water to cover the beans about twice over for overnight soaking
- 4 cups of chicken broth (Grandma used water, but I like chicken broth)
- a quart of diced tomatoes (probably equivalent to a 28 oz can)
- 2 big smoked ham hocks
- 4 big carrots, cut in chunks
- 4 potatoes, cut in chunks
- 2 TBSP minced garlic
- salt and pepper
First, you really must soak these beans before you cook them. I know that in the past I’ve said that I’m not a bean-soaker, but I have to break my own rule for these. That’s because these are unyielding little buggers, and if you don’t get a running jump at them, you might as well forget eating this week. Just put your picked-over, rinsed beans in the crock pot and cover with hot water. Boiling water is even better. Let those soak for a good 3 or 4 hours in the morning (or all day if you’re at work).
Next, drain off the water and add the chicken broth to the crock pot. Here’s what I keep on hand for just such occasions:
I start to feel a little uneasy when I’m down to my last box of this. You never know when a chicken broth emergency might present itself.
Add your tomatoes. I used the second-to-the-last jar of tomatoes I canned last summer. That also makes me feel a little uneasy. The only thing worse than a chicken broth emergency is a diced tomato emergency. But I probably don’t need to tell you that.
Nestle the smoked ham hocks down in the beans and add the garlic and salt and pepper. Cover and cook on low overnight.
The next day (otherwise known as “the day you actually get to eat soup” ), add the carrots and potatoes to the pot. Cover and cook on low all day long (10-12 hours). Hopefully, all that cooking and stirring will have conquered those rebellious navy beans and you won’t crack a tooth on them.
Just before serving, scoop out the ham hocks, shred the meat, and return it to the pot.
I hope you try this. Something intense and wonderful happens in all those hours of cooking. You
coerce coax as much flavor out of these ingredients that can possibly be coerced coaxed.
The best part is, we’ll be coming home to this after church today. Nice 🙂