This is a recipe I've been searching for for a long time. On my trips to Southern California, I would always stop in a restaurant named Keefer's Inn in King City, California. Unfortunately, the restaurant changed hands and this soup served there wasn't the same.In the old restaurant, in their gift shop, burlap bags of pink beans were sold along with a recipe card for this soup. I never bought one because I thought the restaurant would be there forever! I wrote in to a local newspaper food column asking if anyone still had the recipe and lucked out!
Pink beans are smallish, sweet, meaty beans sometimes are known as chili beans; however, any pea or bean will work. I just love the pink beans for this savory soup.
* cooking time does not include overnight soaking
** a ham bone can certainly be used instead of a ham hock