Prep 10 mins
Cook 1 hr 30 mins
An Old World bean soup recipe given to me by my husband's cousin's grandparents who are from the Portuguese Azore Islands. You can follow the spice trade route with this recipe. Pity that pink beans are not used much in cooking. They are so delicious! This makes the house smell so good! Can easily be prepared vegetarian.
- 2 cups dried pink beans, picked over and soaked
- 8 cups water
- 3 -4 slices bacon, crisply cooked (substitute ham hock, read NOTE*)
- 1 medium yellow onion, chopped
- 2 garlic cloves
- 1 cinnamon stick
- 1 teaspoon cumin powder
- 1 teaspoon coriander seed
- 5 -6 whole cloves
- 8 whole allspice
- 2 bay leaves
- 6 ounces tomatoes (diced or pureed)
- salt and pepper
- *NOTE: Can also substitute sausage for the bacon or ham hock. Portuguese linguica, Spanish chorizo or Louisiana andouille, vegetarian "soyrizo", etc. are suggestions. My preference being bacon as I don't care for sausage or ham hock.
- For additional flavor, I usually dry roast the spices in a castiron skillet.
- Soak the beans overnight. Cook the bacon or ham hock and drain on paper towel. Next saute the onion and garlic. Once cooled, break up the bacon into little pieces.
- In large Dutch oven or in crock pot, combine all the ingredients, including the water, excluding the salt. If using a Dutch oven, simmer the beans on medium-low for about 1 1/2 to 2 hours or until beans are soft.
- If using a crock pot simmer on low 8 hours or until beans are soft. Salt the beans once cooked.
- Adjust seasoning before serving. Now season with salt.
- Remove whole cloves, cinnamon stick and whole allspice.
- Great with freshly baked, crusty bread. Tastes even better if prepared one day ahead then warmed.
This recipe had mixed reviews around our table. Some of us like it, others felt the whole cloves was a over powering taste. I used Romano beans and I also used Portuguese Style Smoked Bacon, in Portuguese it is called "Toucinho" in which I sauteed along with the chorizo after I sauteed the onions. I also added beer instead of all water. Made for Team "Cooks With Dirty Face" for ZWT5
Good recipe, could go as a soup or even as a side dish. I used Pinto beans and instead of whole cinnamon and allspice I added a pinch of cinnamon and a tsp. of allspice. I liked the flavors, seems to have a Moorish influence! :) the other things I changed were, instead of gr. coriander I added fresh cilantro toward the end of the cooking time. Also I added the tomatoes the same time I added the cilantro. I think the next time I make this I will add the bacon more toward the end of the recipes, just to keep it cripsp! Thank you for posting this flavorful recipe. :) Made for ZWT5
This bean soup is fantastic! It's perfectly spiced without the "heat." I used ground allspice (about 1/2 tsp) instead of the whole berries, but otherwise made no changes to the recipe. I also used the bacon, draining off all but 1 tbsp of the fat to cook the onions in. I, too, love pink beans and wish they were used more often. Thanx for sharing an old family recipe!