Black Bean and Ham Soup (Crock Pot)

Time: 15 min. prep + 4-6 hours crock pot cooking
Yield: 6-7 servings
Recipe from Jamie Cooks It Up!

4 cloves garlic, minced
1 red, orange or green pepper, chopped
1 small onion, chopped
1 T olive oil
2 C ham, chopped
4 (15 ounce) cans black beans, rinsed and drained
3 C chicken broth
2 C hot water
1/2 t cumin
1/2 t thyme
1/2 t oregano
1 bay leaf

1. Chop up 4 cloves of garlic, 1 bell pepper (I used several small orange and yellow sweet peppers) and 1 onion.

2. Heat a medium-sized skillet up over medium high heat. Add 1 tablespoon of oil. When it's nice and hot toss your vegetables in. Let them cook, stirring occasionally until the onions are translucent. Should take about 5 minutes. When they are cooked, toss them into your crock pot. I used a 7 quart crock pot, but I think you could get by with one as small as a 4 quart.

3. Chop up 2 cups of ham and add them to the pot.

4. Drain and rinse 4 cans of black beans. Add them to the pot.

5. Pour 3 cups chicken broth and 2 cups of hot water over the black beans.

6. Add 1/2 teaspoon cumin. (Just go along with the picture up above. The jar missing a label is cumin. Promise. Cross my heart and hope to die). Add 1/2 teaspoon of oregano and 1/2 teaspoon of thyme.

7. Toss one bay leaf into that pretty crock pot of yours and give everything a nice stir. Cover your crock and let it cook for 4-6 hours on low.

Serve with sour cream, cheese and tortilla chips.