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Red Beans and Rice

1 lb Red beans
1 1/2 lb Smoked sausage; sliced
1/2 lb Smoked ham shanks
1 lg Onion chopped
1 Green pepper; seeded and chopped
1 Celery stalk; chopped
1 Clove garlic; finely chopped
1 ts Dried thyme; crumbled
1 ts Ground pepper
1/2 ts Ground sage
1 Bay leaf
1 pn Ground red pepper
Salt
Freshly cooked rice


Place beans in Dutch oven and cover generously with water. Let soak for 30 minutes. Add all remaining ingredients to beans except salt and rice. Bring to boil over medium heat. Reduce heat to medium-low, cover, and simmer until beans are tender, adding more water if necessary, about 2 1/2 hours. Add salt to taste. Remove ham bones. Remove about 3 Tablespoons of beans from mixture and mash to a paste. Return bean paste to mixture and stir. Simmer 15 more minutes and then serve hot over the rice.


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