Portuguese Bean Soup
Hawaiian cuisine is a melting pot of different influences that the natives have adopted, perfected and made their own. Between 1878 and 1911, over 16,000 Portuguese migrants have arrived in Hawaii, mostly from the Madeira and Azores islands. They brought their local traditions and cuisine to Hawaii and this Portuguese soup has become a local staple.
Portuguese bean soup a delicious, warming dish that is so hearty it’s often served as a meal on its own. Families like to prepare large pots of this soup to last the entire week. The ham hock broth and Portuguese sausage give this soup its signature smoky flavor, while the vegetables enrich it with subtle earthy hints.
Portuguese Bean Soup
- 1 ½ lb ham hocks
- 1 lb Portuguese sausage diced
- 2 cans kidney beans or 2 ½ -3 cups (about 370-400 g) dry red beans soaked in water overnight and drained
- 2 potatoes cubed
- 3 carrots diced
- 1 yellow onion chopped
- 1 cup celery chopped
- 1 cabbage head medium-sized, chopped or cubed
- 16 oz crushed tomatoes canned
- 16 oz tomato sauce canned
- 1 cup macaroni uncooked
- 3 cloves garlic minced
- 1 tbsp sugar
- salt to taste
- pepper to taste
- Prepare the stock by placing the ham hocks in a large soup pot with about 2 quarts of water and bring to a boil. Cover the pot and simmer the meat for about 1 ½ -2 hours until tender.
- Transfer the meat to a large dish or cutting board to cool. Reserve the stock in the pot.
- Once the ham hocks are cool enough to handle, remove the meat off the bones and chop into smaller pieces.
- Return the stock to the fire and bring it back to a boil.
- Introduce the canned crushed tomatoes and tomato sauce and wait for the mixture to bubble. Then add the cooked meat, onion, celery, carrots and potatoes and continue simmering.
- When the potatoes are half cooked, add the sausage, garlic, cabbage, and kidney beans and finally the macaroni.
- Simmer for 15 – 30 minutes until all the vegetables and the macaroni have cooked through. Check the seasoning and add salt and pepper according to your taste.
- Remember to adjust the consistency along the way if you think the soup becomes too thick by adding some water.