(Sephardic White Bean and Beef Soup)
1 lb. (about 2 1/2 cups) dried navy or other white beans, or 2 cups dried Garbanzos (chick peas)
1/4 cup olive or vegetable oil
2 large yellow onions or leeks, chopped (about 1 1/2 cups)
7 cups cold water
4 cups (2 lb.) peeled, seeded and chopped tomatoes
1 cup tomato sauce or 1/4 cup tomato paste
1 1/2 lb. beef chuck or short ribs, cut into 2 inch pieces
3 tbs. chopped fresh parsley
1 1/2 tsp. salt
ground black pepper to taste.
Cover the beans with water. Bring to a boil. Reduce the heat to low and simmer for 1 hour. Meanwhile, heat the oil in a large pot over medium heat. Add the onionss or leeks and saute until golden in color. Add the meat and the 7 cups of water. Bring to a boil, reduce heat to low and simmer, skimming occasionally for 45 minutes. Add the beans and tomatoes, tomato sauce or paste. Cover the pot and simmer until the meat and beans are very tender -- at least 3 hours. Stir in parsley, salt and pepper. Serve with pita or other flat bread and lemon wedges.