I lived in Richmond Va. for 16 years, and on the weekends, would go into D.C. I loved to go through the U.S. Capital. The U.S. Senate has came to stand for many things in the Republic. One is its bean soup. Cookes ladle out gallons of 8-oz servings each day in the 11 dining rooms on the Hill.Senate bean soup can be served on any occasion that warrants a hot, steamy, filling and thick soup such as this. I love bean soup and this is a tasty recipe that I enjoy very much.
Place beans in a pot of cold water and soak overnight, drain the beans and replace the water to cook.
Using a 5-quart pot , place the drained beans in with 3-quarts of cold water.Bring the water to a boil , reduce heat and simmer over low heat for 2 hours along with the ham bone.
In the meantime chop the onions, garlic, celery, and parsley. When the beans and meat has cooked for 2 hours , add the chopped vegatables and the potatos to the pot. Simmer for one hour longer or until beans are tender.
Season with salt and pepper to taste. Remove the bones and meat from the soup, Dice the meat into 1/2 inch pieces and return to the pot. Discard the bones. Garnish with snippets of parsley or chives when ready to ladle into bowls.