Wednesday, October 17, 2012

Crock Pot Black Eyed Pea Soup

I love my crock pot.

I really, truly LOVE my crock pot.

I love being able to dump a few ingredients in there, head to work and come home to a home cooked meal and the house smelling divine!

It is the ultimate multi-tasking!  Cooking dinner while being at work....I mean seriously!  That is just about as good as it gets. 

With my love affair with my crock pot out in the open I must direct your attention to a blog my sister-in-law turned me onto called A Year of Slow Cooking where New York Times bestselling author and award winning blogger, Stephanie O'Dea, cooked only crock pot recipes for an entire year.

For so long my crock pot recipes were limited to soups and stews but she has blown the span of possibilities totally out of the water!

This is one of her recipes that we recently had and it will definitely be one of those recipes I make frequently as the weather starts to get cooler!

Crock Pot Black Eyed Pea Soup
as adapted from A Year of Slow Cooking

1 pound dried black eyed peas
1 pound spicy sausage (I used Aidells chicken habanero and greenchile)
6 cups chicken broth 
1 yellow onion, diced
1 cup diced carrots
1 cup diced celery 
4 cloves garlic, diced
1/2 tsp Italian seasoning (not pictured. I didn't know I needed it at first. But I did.)
1 tsp kosher salt
1/2 tsp black pepper 
Tabasco sauce (to add at the end to taste)

Soak your beans overnight. Drain and pick out the undesirables (broken, discolored beans) in the morning.

Use a 5 to 6 quart crockpot. This will serve about 8 people. Dice the veggies, and dump them into your crockpot with the pre-soaked beans. Add sliced sausage. Pour in broth, and stir in Italian seasoning, salt, and pepper.

Cover and cook on low for 8 hours, or on high for about 6. Before serving, use a stick blender to smash up about 1 cup of beans. If you don't have a stick blender, scoop out 1 cup of beans, blend them in a traditional blender, and add back to the soup. Don't blend too much---just enough to get the broth thicker and creamy-looking.

Ladle into bowls, and add Tabasco sauce to taste.

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