For us, 15 bean soup is a quick, easy, and cheap dinner even though we cook it slow. “Slow cook a quick meal? What are you talking about? Have you been sniffing low VOC glue again?” You say.
No, I’m not crazy or damaged (much.) I say that 15 bean soup is quick because it’s a low effort meal – perfect for those nights when you can’t cook a huge dinner due to prior commitments but don’t want to feed the family junky fast food.
I say that 15 bean soup is slow because we use the crock pot to cook the 15 bean soup mix. 15 bean soup is one of the few meals that we buy in premix form. It’s one of the few things we eat that it’s cheaper to go with the mix than with buying bags of all the different types of beans that are typically in this soup and most of the dried bean soup mixes sold in our area are pretty healthy.
Husband tosses the beans, water, spice mix, and whatever meat we have on hand in the slow cooker) in the morning and by the time he comes home from work, we have a very tasty soup ready for dinner. If you’re a vegetarian, I’m told that beets make a tasty substitute for using meat to flavor this soup although we haven’t tried it because Husband doesn’t like beets.
15 bean soup is a very filling meal especially when I make dark pumpernickel bread in the bread maker to go with it.
If you’re concerned about avoiding dairy then my dark pumpernickel bread recipe is for you. Although I’m not vegan, I think this recipe might be depending upon what you use for the cocoa/carob powder. I use 100% dark baking cocoa powder to make it.
¾ cup water
1 tablespoon vegetable or canola oil
1 teaspoon salt
2 tablespoons molasses
1 tablespoon brown sugar
1 tablespoon and 1 teaspoon cocoa or carob powder
1 teaspoon of strong brewed coffee
2 teaspoons caraway seeds
¾ cup rye flour
¾ cup whole wheat flour
1 cup of regular white flour or white bread flour
2 teaspoons yeast
Select the 1 pound loaf size on your bread machine (if applicable.) Add the ingredients in the order listed and according to the manufacturer’s directions. Start the bread machine and wait until done.
Tip: Use the same measuring cup to measure the oil and then the molasses. Measure and pour the oil into the breadmaking pan first. Do not rinse or wash out the measuring cup. Next, measure the molasses in the now lubricated cup for easier pouring.
Extra Tip: If you are at home while cooking both the soup in the Crockpot and the pumpernickel bread in the bread maker, around 3:00 in the afternoon you are going to start smelling some very good things coming out of your kitchen! This might make you very hungry. This might be a bad time to be working or hanging out at home.
Extra Extra Tip: Cooking dried beans in the crockpot all day makes them - oh how should I put this? - gasless.
If you don’t have a bread maker, you could pair your 15 bean soup with The Good Human’s no knead no bread maker wheat bread.
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