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"Joyful Curmudgeon" An oxymoron?
No! I see all the beauty of God's creation and I'm joyful.  At the same time, I see all the suffering and corruption going on in the world, and feel called to help expose and end it so that we may have true peace and compassion.


Hoffman Helpful Hint: Bean Soup – 23 February 2008
By Mary T. Hoffman

I’ve found an easier way to start dried bean soup in the slow cooker. Instead of heating the water to boiling before adding it to the slow cooker the night before, now I add unheated water to the rinsed dried beans the night before and leave the setting at “low” heat all night until morning.

The beans are all cooked in the morning, so all I have to do is heat whatever other veggies the recipe calls for in the microwave oven and add them to the already cooked beans. I also add the seasonings to the slow cooker, stir all the ingredients together, and allow the soup to continue cooking at low heat for a few hours, or until the flavors are blended together. Then I turn the slow cooker off.

Tonight I’m cooking Black-Eyed Pea Soup this way. I’ll sort and rinse two pounds of dried black-eyed peas in a strainer, add them to the 6 ½ quart slow cooker set on “low,” along with 12 cups water and a few bay leaves. Then in the morning I’ll cook 3 cups of diced onions in the microwave oven and add them to the slow cooker along with 6 ounces of tomato paste and a dash of hot sauce or cayenne pepper (optional).

For the complete original Black-Eyed Pea Soup recipe, visit:

For other great-tasting recipes, visit:

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