Red Beans

This bean dish was served at a lunch at work, in both vegan and with-bacon-and-ham forms. Judi and I thought the vegan one was delicious (don't know about the other!); I brought home leftovers, and Larry agreed. Turns out catering got the recipe from our admin assistant, Vickie, whose office is next to mine. So we bought dry red beans and tried it. The veggie broth had plenty of salt in it, so I don't list the half teaspoon of salt called for in this recipe, after tasting it. Anyway, it was easy and very flavorful! I think dry beans taste better than canned, but you could used canned, of course. And I liked cooking the dried beans in the large soup pot for this; I usually boil beans in a smaller saucepan, and that's messy. Big soup pot from now on for beans! Serve with rice or cauliflower rice and a veggie.

1 pound dried red beans, rinsed
2 T olive oil
1 1/2 cups chopped yellow onions
3/4 cup chopped celery
3/4 cup chopped bell peppers (yellow or green)
10 cups veggie stock

3 bay leaves
2 tsp dried thyme
3 T chopped garlic (yes, a lot of garlic!)
Freshly ground black pepper to taste
Pinch cayenne (or more :)
2 T chopped fresh parsley (if you have it)

Place the beans in a large bowl or pot and cover with water by 2 inches. Let soak for 8 hours or overnight. Drain and set aside.

In a large soup pot, fry the onions, celery and bell peppers to the oil for 5-8 minutes. Add seasoning (see list above) and cook, stirring, about 4 minutes. Add the garlic and cook for 1 minute. Add the beans and stock and bring to a boil. Reduce the heat to medium-low and simmer, uncovered, stirring occasionally, until the beans are tender and starting to thicken, about 2 hours. Turn off and let cool. Remove the bay leaves before serving.

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