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Eating Healthy With Carla Hall: Southern Soup Beans & Hot Water Cornbread

By AARP Foundation

As we age, small shifts in food and beverage choices can help to improve our overall health.

In this video, Carla Hall shows us how swapping spices for salt can help you live a longer, healthier life as she cooks up southern soup beans and hot water cornbread.

Ingredient List & Preparation Instructions: Southern Soup Beans & Hot Water Cornbread

[Serves 4-6 people]

Southern Soup Beans:

  • 1 pound dry beans – blend of: pinto, navy, black-eyed pea, lima beans
  • 2 whole carrots, peeled and cut into ¼ inch dice
  • 1 medium onion, finely diced (reserve ½ onion dice for garnish)
  • 1 celery stalk, trimmed; cut into ¼ inch dice
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 2 garlic cloves, sliced thinly
  • 2 smoked dried serrano chili peppers
  • 1 teaspoons smoked paprika
  • 3 tablespoons olive oil
  • ½ teaspoon ground cumin
  • ½ teaspoon cayenne pepper
  • 2 teaspoons salt
  • ½ teaspoon pepper

Method of Preparation

  1. Rinse, drain and pick through beans for stones or debris. Soak overnight covered with 8 cups of water.
  2. Drain, rinse and return the beans to the medium-large stock or soup pot. Cover with 8 cups of fresh cold water. Add the carrots, onion, celery, bay leaves, garlic, smoked paprika and serrano chili peppers.
  3. Bring to a boil. Reduce to a simmer, and cook uncovered for 1½ – 2 hours, or thickened and creamy. Once the pot is simmering, do not allow it to boil.
  4. Stir in the olive oil, cumin and cayenne. Season with salt and pepper; adjust to taste
  5. Serve with diced raw onion

Hot Water Cornbread:

  • 1 cup white cornmeal
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 tablespoon shortening
  • 3/4 cup boiling water
  • Canola oil or peanut oil

In a medium size bowl, combine dry ingredients. Stir in shortening and boiling water. Mix well. Shape mixture into small patties.

In cast iron skillet, heat 1/4 inch canola oil or peanut oil. Fry patties until golden on each side, about 5 minutes.

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