I enjoyed receiving a gift that I now put together to give to others (co-workers, friends, could be for room parents):
Confetti Bean Soup - Present as a gift in a plain 1 quart jar, lid covered with a pretty round of fabric, tied on with ribbon or yarn, cooking instructions attached to the tie. An attractive, useful, unique, inexpensive gift. Can be assembled weeks, even months in advance.
These directions make 4 jars of soup mix.
In large bowl, mix:
1 16 oz bag of each of these (all dry beans):
black beans, Great Northern beans, red kidney, pinto, green split-pea.
Divide the combined beans into four 4-cup jars (about 3 rounded cups of beans in each jar).
Prepare seasoning bags (see below).
Place 1 seasoning bag on top of the beans in each jar.
Seasoning Bags: Cut four, 6-inch squares of plastic wrap. Onto each square place:
3 beef-flavor bouillion cubes,
3 tablespoons dried chopped chives,
1 teaspoon salt,
1 teaspoon dried savory,
1/2 teaspoon ground cumin,
1/2 teaspoon coarsley ground black pepper and
one bay leaf..
Gather plastic wrap up to form a pouch; tie with a string or ribbon.
Attach to each jar a tag with these directions:
Confetti Bean Soup Cooking Directions
About 3 hours before serving:
1. Rinse beans from one container of Confetti Soup Mix with running cold water and discard any stones or shriveled beans.
In 5 qt. Dutch oven over high heat, heat beans and 9 cups water to boil; cook for 3 minutes.
Remove from heat; cover and let stand for one hour. Drain and rinse beans.
2. Return beans to Dutch oven; add contents of seasoning bag from mix and 5 cups water; over high heat, heat to boiling. Reduce heat to low; cover and simmer 1 1/2 hours or until beans are tender, stirring occasionally.
3. Add one 14-16 oz. can stewed tomatoes with its liquid; over high heat, heat to boiling. Reduce heat to low; cook, unc overed, 15 minutes longer, stirring to break up tomatoes. Discard bay leaf.
Makes 6 main-dish servings.
345 calories, 2 g fat, 0 mg cholesterol, 1065 mg sodium.