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My first foray into the adventures of bean cookery. I had a terrible time tracking down fresh basil. I ended up just buying a basil plant. Not sure how it’ll do in my light-deprived apartment, but if it’ll just hold on until May, it can go outside.

basil plant

I started off with this recipe. Then I did some tweaking. I don’t like canned beans, they tend to be too salty, and some of them have a gross metalic taste. So I used dry beans. I also subbed kielbasa (polish sausage) for bratwurst, because I like it better.


  • 1/3 cup dry pinto beans
  • 1/3 cup dry red beans
  • 1/3 cup dry navy beans
  • 1 cup chicken broth
  • 1 cup beef broth
  • 1 cup chopped carrots
  • 1 small onion, chopped
  • 1/4 cup fresh basil, cut
  • 1/4 cup fresh parsley, cut
  • 1 kielbasa, chopped
  • 1 cup sauerkraut


  1. Rinse dry beans, boil for 2 minutes.
  2. Remove from heat, cover & let sit for 1 hour.
  3. Combine ingredients in a stock pot or slow cooker.
  4. Simmer until beans are tender.

Honestly, I was a little skeptical of this because of the sauerkraut. I’m not a sauerkraut fan, in general, but the reviews of the recipe on AllRecipes.com were very convincing, so I gave it a try. I was pleasantly surprised. It was very flavorful, very hearty. I’m looking forward to having it for lunch this week, and I’ll probably freeze some for later. I’ll definitely be making it again.

warm heart stew