Sort, wash beans. Place in a 3-quart soup pot. Add water and both Redi-Bases. Cover. Bring to a boil. Lower to a slow simmer and cook 1½ hours. While beans are cooking, place olive oil in a sauté pan. Sauté onions until caramelized. Add carrot and continue to sauté for 4-5 minutes. Remove from heat. When beans have cooked the 1½ hours. Add the onion and carrot mixture. Add the parsley, thyme, rosemary, and garlic powder. Continue to cook for another ½ hour.
Food for Thought
Why two Redi-Bases? This is a balancing act. Eight cups of water that will cook down, will require about 7 tsp. of a base. So, do you want it to taste like chicken or would you like a hint of ham in the soup?
Why cook the carrots and onions separately? If you just toss the onion and carrots into the beans and cook, you will lose the flavors of caramelization. If you caramelize the onions, they will not be bitter. If you sauté the carrots, the sweetness of the carrots will now be part of your soup.
Why sort-wash beans? Bean supply companies are better than ever at sorting and cleaning; but, do it anyway, you won’t be sorry.
Fresh vs. dried seasonings? That’s up to you. Just remember that dried herbs and seasonings are stronger in taste.
Adding ham? Often bean soups call for ham shanks. Up to you. May or may not be worth the work. I purchase the ham, slice it up into julienne strips and stir into the soup when it is served.