navy-beansThis has been one of my favourites since I was a kid. Mom makes it fairly often and we normally eat it just as a soup, although many people also like it over rice. As kids we put ketchup in it.

Serves 4

  • 450g dry white navy beans soaked overnight in enough cold water to cover
  • 225g smoked sausage, finely chopped
  • 1 large, meaty ham bone sawed into 5cm lengths (your butcher will do this if you ask)
  • 1 large onion, chopped
  • 1/2 green pepper, chopped
  • 2 stalks celery, chopped
  • 3 garlic cloves, finely chopped
  • 4 spring onions, green parts only, sliced
  • 1 tablespoon parsley, minced
  • 1/4 tsp dried thyme
  • 1 bay leaf, broken in half
  • Salt, black pepper & cayenne (I like to use both ground and flaked cayenne)

Drain the beans and put them in a large heavy pot with all the other ingredients. Cover with 2 litres of cold water and bring to the boil, then reduce the heat and simmer for 3 hours. The beans should be very soft and the soup thick. Remove the ham bones from the soup with a slotted spoon.

Remove about 3 cupfuls of whole beans (don’t worry if you pick up a few bits of sausage etc as well) and mash them roughly in a bowl with a potato masher before returning to the pot.

Stir the soup well before serving (with ketchup or not).

navy bean soup

Buy The Savoy Kitchen – A Family History of Cajun Food by Sarah Savoy here.


The Savoy Kitchen front cover book artwork

We’re excited to unveil the cover for our next book, ‘The Savoy Kitchen – A Family History of Cajun Food’, and it’s ace! Lovingly shot and designed by Joby Catto at Anti Limited, it sums up Sarah and the Savoy family in one still life photograph.

There’s loads of details to spot, and when you read the book you’ll pick up on even more of the references. We hope you like it as much as we do!

Savoy Kitchen promo postcard

We’ve been working hard on a great new project, due to hit the shops in October 2013. Check out The Savoy Kitchen – A Family History of Cajun Food by Sarah Savoy, the self-proclaimed Queen of white Cajun trash and the latest in a long line of Savoys to fly the flag for Cajun food, music and culture. Daughter of legendary musicians Marc and Ann Savoy, she grew up in the heart of Cajun country and learned her culture around the kitchen table.

In The Savoy Kitchen she brings together recipes from three generations: from her own fresh take on Gumbo and many other Cajun classics to her father’s Courtbouillon cooked over an open fire and her grandma’s Fig Drop Cookies.

Part-cookbook, part memoir, The Savoy Kitchen is illustrated with photographs by her sister, Gabrielle Savoy, and illustration by Jen Collins, which capture perfectly contemporary Cajun life as lived by one of its foremost musical families.