Since I am such a fan of soups, I have this rather odd habit of assigning certain soups to certain fall-related activities. There’s just something about building a tradition around soup that makes me happy. So basically, this is a 15 Bean soup, but it’s known as Apple Picking Day soup in our house.
Why has this soup earned the coveted spot of official apple picking day soup? It’s simple really.
- I can prep it in the morning and let it simmer all day while we are gone.
- It’s about as hearty as any soup can get. We need a hearty soup after a day of fun and hard work that usually includes a simple lunch of nothing more than lots of donuts and hot cider.
- The bit of kick in the soup is so warming after a chilly day outside.
- It just looks and smells like fall.
- It makes a lot, which is helpful since it means we can get two nights worth of dinner out of it while we’re busy dealing with all those apples.
15 Bean Soup
- 1 lb. bulk hot pork sausage (if you don’t like spicy, you can swap this out with regular sausage)
- 1/2 lb. Li’l Smokies, sliced
- 1 onion, diced
- 1 red pepper, diced
- 1/2 lb. carrots, sliced
- 1 lb. 15 bean combination, soaked overnight
- 1 jar sliced mushrooms, drained *
- 6 c. chicken stock
- 1 t. thyme
- Salt and pepper, to taste
1. Start cooking the hot sausage in a large stock pot. Add the sliced li’l smokies, onions, red pepper and carrots. Cook until sausage is fully browned.
2. Stir in soaked beans, mushrooms, stock and thyme. Bring to a boil. Cover and reduce heat. Let simmer at least one hour, until beans are tender, or up to 8 hours. Season with salt and pepper to taste just before serving.
*This is the only time I ever use jarred/canned mushroom. I’ve tried the soup with fresh mushrooms before and it was still really good, but there’s just something about those jarred mushrooms that adds a unique taste to the soup.