Self Styled Black Bean Soup
|Olive oil||1⁄2 Cup (8 tbs)|
|Salt pork/Bacon||1⁄2 Pound, diced|
|Black forest ham/Westphalian ham / prosciutto / 1 pound meaty ham hocks||1⁄2 Pound, diced; if using ham hocks - cut into 2-inch-thick slices|
|Onions||4 Pound, chopped (8 In Number, Large)|
|Garlic||8 Clove (40 gm), minced / pressed|
|Celery stalks with leaves||6 Large, chopped|
|Dried black beans||2 Pound (About 5 Cups)|
|Ground cumin||4 Teaspoon|
|Homemade chicken broth/4 large cans (49 1/2 oz. each) regular-strength chicken broth||6 Quart|
|Wine vinegar||1⁄4 Cup (4 tbs)|
|Dry sherry||1 Cup (16 tbs)|
In a 10- to 12-quart pan over medium-high heat, combine oil, salt pork, ham, onions, garlic, and celery.
Cook, stirring occasionally, until vegetables are soft and lightly browned and all liquid has evaporated, about 40 minutes.
Sort beans and remove any debris; rinse beans well, drain, and add to pan along with cayenne, cumin, and broth.
Bring to a boil over high heat; reduce heat, cover, and simmer until beans mash easily, 2 1/2 to 3 hours.
Skim and discard fat.
Whirl bean mixture, a portion at a time, in a food processor or blender until smooth.