Friday, May 13, 2011

17 Bean Soup

In an effort to eat healthier and lose ten pounds before I get married in January, I have been eating more soup and salad. While soup and salad can be secretly loaded with calories, many are healthy and filling. Case in point: 17 bean soup, from Trader Joe's. Found in the dry goods section (the rice and such), it a bag of dry beans, 17 to be exact :)
The package recommends soaking the beans in water overnight in a large pot. This estimate is slightly off, thinks I. I soaked the beans the night before. They absorbed quite a bit of the water by morning and still felt hard, so I resoaked them until I got home from work at 7 p.m. Then I drained the beans and added an entire carton of low-sodium vegetable broth, also from Trader Joe's. I chopped up three zucchinis and threw those in, along with half a chopped white onion, and three diced carrots. I then decided it needed a kick, so I threw in Rotel tomatoes and chilis (there was so much broth and beans, the spice wasn't all that noticeable). Finally, I added minced garlic, salt, pepper, a bit of chili powder, paprika, oregano and crushed bay leaves, all to taste.

The downside is that the soup cooked for over an hour and the beans were still not as soft as I'd have liked them, so they had to cook another hour. These were some really firm beans. I had already eaten dinner by this point so I let the soup cool and served it into various tupperware bowls for my lunch the next day and Mikey's lunch and dinner at work.

The finished product.

Although it was time consuming, the soup was delicious. The best thing about it is that the supplemental ingredients can be changed every time to suit your mood.

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