Did you know that every day in the United States Senate cafeteria, they serve a bean soup? The aptly named Senate Bean Soup consists of beans, ham and mashed potatoes; it originally cost .15¢ in 1940 per bowl ($3.60 today). Legend has it that if the Cold War were ever to escalate enough that the Senate would have to flee to their underground bunker, the cafeteria in the bunker would serve Senate Bean Soup.
Our favorite historical tidbit about Senate Bean Soup is this, from Wikipedia:
On September 14, 1943, rationing due to World War II left the Senate kitchen without enough navy beans to serve the soup. The Washington Times-Herald reported on its absence the following day. In a speech on the Senate floor in 1988, Bob Dole recounted the response to the crisis: “Somehow, by the next day, more beans were found and bowls of bean soup have been ladled up without interruption ever since.”
Putting a Randall Beans twist on this recipe, we made a vegetarian version with Great Northern Beans. Here’s hoping that you can find some beans to cook this with, and your soup will also be ladled up without interruption.