The Recipe of the Week from The Happy Chef: October Bean Soup

This is my Dad’s bean soup recipe that he created! (Somewhere in heaven my mom must be so proud.) I often long to hear her thoughts on how wonderful he is doing. It makes me smile and laugh to think of what she would say about his really fantastic culinary creations. When I read through this recipe I thought – Where did he learn to do all this? Is he going to culinary school at night and not telling me. But it doesn’t surprise me, he is a quick study – tenacious, creative and very meticulous. All these things make for the development of a great chef! I am so very proud of him and it makes my heart swell with Joy to see his life move on so beautifully. My Dad said he thinks any kind of dried beans would work in this recipe but not as well or as good as “October beans!” His friend, Kay, found October beans at the wonderful and authentic farmer’s market in Burnt Chimney called, “Beckner’s.” So go pick up some October beans and make some aptly named bean soup this October. I plan to make this soup on Halloween!

½ lb. October Beans (appx. 1 ½ cups)

Soak overnight

Place beans in 7 cups of boiling water, add the following ingredients, and allow all to simmer, not boil, for appx. 1 ¼ to 2 hours

1 ½ tsp. salt

½  tsp. pepper

1 clove garlic, minced

1 small onion, diced

½ slice of cooked thick-slice bacon, cut into bits

3 (3-4 leaf) springs of parsley, stems & all, chopped

3 tiny (1 to 2 inch long) carrots, chopped

7 cherry tomatoes, quartered.

1 tender stock celery with leaves on, chopped

3-4 sprigs of dill weed, chopped

Simmer, stirring frequently, until the beans are tender and soft, not mush.

By Leigh Sackett