Senate bean soup is a soup served in the dining room of the United States Senate every day. The tradition dates back to the early 1900s.
This is a typical recipe for the soup.
- 1 pound dried navy beans or great northern beans, washed and drained
- 2 medium smoked ham hocks
- 3 medium potatoes, cooked and mashed
- 2 medium onions, chopped
- 1 cup chopped celery
- 2 large cloves garlic, minced
- salt and pepper
Cover beans with water and bring to a boil; boil for 2 minutes. Remove from heat, cover, and let stand for 1 hour. Drain bean liquid into a bowl; measure and add enough water or broth to make 5 quarts; pour back into beans. Bring beans to a boil, reduce heat, cover and simmer for about 2 hours, or until beans are very tender. Add ham hocks, potatoes, onions, celery and garlic, and continue to simmer for another hour. Remove ham hocks and cut up meat; return to soup. Season to taste with salt and pepper.
Makes about 2 gallons or 8 quarts.