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3 to 5 heavily smoked ham hocks
2 lbs. dry pinto beans, washed & cleaned
1 lg. onion, chopped
3 lg. cloves garlic

Place ham hocks, onion and garlic into a large cooking pot. Add enough water to fill the pot about 3/4 full. Boil 1 to 2 hours or until the hocks are tender. Add pinto beans and water as necessary and continue cooking 1 to 2 hours more until the beans are done. If you soaked the beans before hand, the time required for this part may be reduced. If you like them zesty, a couple of Jalapeno peppers may be added here. Taste is important here. I like to cook mine until the beans begin to fall apart and the broth begins to look like thick bean soup, but I feel this greatly enhances the flavor.

Serves 6-8.

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