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Posted by on Feb. 13, 2009 at 9:48 PM
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Senate Bean Soup

Bean soup is on the menu in the Senate's restaurant every day. There are several stories about the origin of that mandate, but none has been corroborated.  

According to one story, the Senate‚Äôs bean soup tradition began early in the 20th-century at the request of Senator Fred Dubois of Idaho.  Another story attributes the request to Senator Knute Nelson of Minnesota, who expressed his fondness for the soup in 1903.

The recipe attributed to Dubois includes mashed potatoes and makes a 5-gallon batch.  The recipe served in the Senate today does not include mashed potatoes, but does include a braised onion.  Both Senate recipes are below.


The Famous Senate Restaurant Bean Soup Recipe

2 pounds dried navy beans

four quarts hot water

1 1/2 pounds smoked ham hocks

1 onion, chopped

2 tablespoons butter

salt and pepper to taste

Wash the navy beans and run hot water through them until they are slightly whitened. Place beans into pot with hot water. Add ham hocks to slow cooker and simmer approximately 10 hours in a covered pot, stirring occasionally. Remove ham hocks and set aside to cool. Dice meat and return to soup. Lightly brown the onion in butter. Add to soup. Before serving, bring to a boil , on HIGH for 4 hours and season with salt and pepper. Serves 8.


Bean Soup Recipe (for five gallons)

3 pounds dried navy beans

2 pounds of ham and a ham bone

1 quart mashed potatoes

5 onions, chopped

2 stalks of celery, chopped

four cloves garlic, chopped

half a bunch of parsley, chopped

Clean the beans, then cook them dry.  Add ham, bone and water and cook on LOW for 10 hours.   Add potatoes and mix thoroughly.  Add chopped vegetables and bring to a boil.  Simmer for 4  hours before serving. 

 This is a wonderful soup.  Serve with a fruit or green salad and cornbread or biscuits.




by on Feb. 13, 2009 at 9:48 PM
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