Old-Fashioned Black Bean and Ham Bone Soup


From Paula Deen Cuts the Fat by Paula Deen and Melissa Clark


2 cups dried black beans

2 tablespoons olive oil

1 large onion, finely chopped

2 carrots, finely chopped

1 parsnip, finely chopped

1 large garlic clove, finely chopped

¼ teaspoon dried thyme

½ teaspoon ground cumin

¼ cup dry red wine

4 cups low-sodium beef broth

3 cups water

1 bay leaf

1 smoked ham hock

Salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste


Rinse the beans in cold water. Place in a medium saucepan and add enough water to cover the beans by about 3 inches. Bring just to a boil over medium-high heat, then remove the pan from the heat and cover. Let the beans stand for 1 hour. Drain and set aside.


In a large pot, heat the oil over medium heat. Add the onion, celery, carrots and parsnip, and cook, stirring for 5 to 7 minutes until the vegetables have softened. Add the garlic, thyme and cumin, and cook until fragrant, about 1 minute. Add the red wine and scrape the bottom of the pan to get up all the brown bits. Cook for 2 minutes. Add the beans, beef broth, water, bay leaf and ham hock. Bring to a boil over medium-high heat, then reduce to a simmer. Cover the pot and cook for 1½ hours.


Take the ham hock out of the soup. Cut the meat off the hock into bit-size pieces and return the meat to the soup. Continue cooking, covered, 30 minutes more, or until the beans are very tender. Remove the bay leaf and season to taste with salt and pepper.






1 ripe avocado, halved and pitted

1 teaspoon fresh lemon juice

¼ teaspoon Paula Deen’s House Seasoning or other seasoned salt

½ teaspoon chopped fresh cilantro (optional)



Paula Deen’s House Seasoning


1 cup salt

¼ cup freshly ground black pepper

¼ cup garlic powder


Makes 1½ cups



Scoop the avocado flesh into a blender or food processor and purée with the lemon juice, seasoned salt and cilantro (if using) until smooth. Serve dolloped on top of the soup.


Makes 2/3 cup guacamole