Bourbon Smoked Sea Salt Bean Soup

For all you meatless eaters out there, there is a solution to the lack of bacon. Over the weekend, I was craving a pot of bean with bacon soup. But how does one make such a rich, delicious soup without ham or bacon? Smoked Sea Salt. More specifically, Bourbon Smoked Sea Salt, which I purchased at Whole Foods.

The salt smells just like bacon, and gives whatever dish you add it to a smoky, rich flavor. For the bean soup, the key is to sauté the smoked sea salt when you start the soup, and add more in at the end. The bean soup was just as rich as any bacon/ham bean soup, and was delicious.

Bourbon Smoked Sea Salt Bean Soup
1 large sweet onion, minced
3 cloves garlic, minced
3 stalks celery, minced
2 large carrots, minced
2 cups Red Mill 13 bean soup mix
8 cups water
1 cube Rapunzel Vegan bouillon
2 large carrots, sliced into roughly 1/4″ chunks
2 stalks celery, sliced into roughly 1/4″ chunks
smoked sea salt (We used Bourbon Smoked Sea Salt from Whole Foods)
coarse ground pepper

1. The night before, place the two cups of beans in a bowl with water, and soak overnight.
2. The next day, sauté the minced onions, garlic, celery, carrots, 1 tsp smoked sea salt, and 1/2 tsp pepper, until soft and delicious (about 15 minutes). (We used a dutch oven on the stove-top to cook the soup, it seemed to cook the beans better. Plus dutch ovens are awesome.)
3. Add the 8 cups water, 1 cube bouillon, sliced carrots, celery, and beans. Cover and simmer for 3 hours at medium heat, to keep a rolling boil.
4. Uncover, and add sea salt and pepper to taste. Simmer uncovered until soup is thick, tasty, and delicious.
5. Enjoy!

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