Senate Bean Soup
1 pound (2 cups) dry Navy Beans
1 meaty ham bone or 1-1/2 pounds ham hocks
1 cup chopped onion
2 garlic cloves, minced
1 cup chopped celery
2/3 cup mashed potato flakes or 1-1/2 cups mashed potatoes
1/4 cup chopped parsley
1-1/2 teaspoons salt
1 teaspoon pepper
1 teaspoon each, nutmeg, oregano, and basil
1 bay leaf
Wash and sort beans. In a large kettle, cover beans with 6 to 8 cups of hot water. Bring to a boil; boil 2 minutes. Remove from heat, cover, and let stand 1 hour. Add another 2 quarts of cold water and ham bone. Bring to a boil; simmer 1-1/2 hours. Stir in remaining ingredients. Simmer 20 to 30 minutes or until beans are tender. Remove ham bone, trim off meat, return to soup.
Makes about 3 quarts.