I love bean soup with ham and I thought I would give it a little kick!! Hopefully you can find the crushed chipotle flakes, they give it a smokey flavor that you can't get with just red pepper flakes. I have seen them in many stores such as Wal-Mart supercenter, Whole Foods, and more. Hope you like it!! (Prep time does not include overnight soaking of the beans)
- 1 (20 ounce) bag 15 bean soup mix (Not using the seasoning packet that is sometimes included in these)
- 1 tablespoon light olive oil
- 1 large white onion, chopped
- 2 large garlic cloves, crushed and chopped
- 3 1⁄2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
- 2 teaspoons crushed chipotle chili pepper flakes (flakes not powder)
- 2 quarts water (8 cups)
- 1 lb ham steak, chopped into bite size chunks (I like Cook's brand)
- 1 (28 ounce) canwhole tomatoes with juice, undrained
- 1 (10 ounce) can Ro-Tel tomatoes, undrained (use Ro-tel original)
- 1 1⁄2 tablespoons light brown sugar
- 1 -2 tablespoon sour cream (optional)
- Place your beans in a big bowl and cover with water 2 or 3 inches above them and soak overnight or for at least 8 hours.
- Drain the beans and set them aside in a collander.
- In a large soup pot, heat the olive oil on medium high heat.
- Saute the onions and garlic with the lemon juice and crushed chipotle peppers until the onion is soft. (about 2 minutes).
- Add the beans and water then stir.
- Bring to a boil, add the ham, then reduce heat to a medium simmer.
- Simmer for 1 hour, uncovered.
- Add the tomatoes with their juice and break them up a little in the soup with a spoon.
- Add the Ro-tel with its juice and the brown sugar. Stir, then turn heat down to a low simmer, uncovered, for 1 more hour or until beans are al dente to your taste.
- Serve with sour cream (optional).