Mixed Bean Soup with Cornmeal Dumplings

Let's see...eight months since my last post. Maybe I'm not so good at blogging. Hansome says I'm good at cooking. So how about a food post?

We were given a large crockpot as a wedding gift. I used it about eight years before the smoke escaped. I replaced it with a huge oval one, but I kept the recipe book that accompanied the first one. I like it because it seems to have been written by someone who knew how to cook--and was a native English speaker. I have made several of the recipes in it, and there are still more on my "that looks good" list. I don't mind sharing this recipe with you because it is my adaptation of one so I don't think I'm infringing on any copyright.

Mixed Bean Soup with Cornmeal Dumplings

1 can each black beans, red kidney beans, and garbanzo beans, rinsed and drained
1 can petite diced tomatoes
1/2 onion (sliced & frozen last week)
1/3 of a two pound bag frozen mixed veggies
4 huge cloves of garlic, minced
One packet fake chicken broth concentrate (Trader Joe's)
1/2 teaspoon sea salt
1 teaspoon chili powder
1 tablespoon dried parsley
Fresh ground black pepper (I ground it until just before my wrists began to wimp out.)
Three cups hot water

Put all of the above in the crockpot. Stir it up. Put the lid on. I turned this on high between noon and noon-thirty. I put the dumplings(see below) in at 4:55. I put it on the table at 5:48. Yum.

In this house, we like meat. Vegetarian meals are rare. Ideally, I would cook up some ground meat and add it to the crockpot at some point before I make the dumplings. That didn't happen this time. Instead, just before I started mixing the dumplin' batter, I put some frozen venison in a frying pan with the lid on to cook faster. I served it next to the soup. Then I mixed what was left into the leftover soup. Lamb or beef would also be nice additions.

Ok, the dumplin's. About an hour (if you have no little kids in the house, or don't get distracted by FB, make that 35-40 minutes) before you wish to serve your meal,

Mix together:
1/2 cup whole wheat pastry flour (Bob's Red Mill)
1/3 cup cornmeal
1 teaspoon baking powder
Set aside or step over to a clear space on your counter then...

mix together:
1 Almosta Farm egg, beaten
2 tablespoons Almosta Farm goat milk
2 teaspoons extra virgin olive oil (This time I had some from Trader Joe's.)
Pour the wet into the dry. Mix until there's no more dry.

Take off the lid of the crockpot. Stir its contents. Place lumps of batter on top of the soup. Mine were about the size of two teaspoons. (They could be made smaller and the just mixed in the soup before serving, but I kind of like to put them to the side of my bowl and treat them like moist biscuits.) Put on the lid. Make sure the crockpot is on high. Leave the lid on for a half hour. Done!

This fed our family of five with leftovers for lunch. The picture is our leftovers. (If you make this and are skilled in the area of photography and presentation--and you would like to share a picture of your concoction for this blog, please let me know!) If we were entertaining company of more than two adults, I would double the recipe. Maybe I'll double it next time anyway and freeze some. And maybe next time I'll plan ahead and start with dry beans. Maybe.


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