My tia Connie made a homemade ham bone & split pea soup last winter. I didn’t think I liked split pea soup. I was wrong. Ever since then, I have been wanting to try making a hambone-based soup. Last week biking by The Swinery in West Seattle, it occured to me to stop and pick up something ‘ham’. That something turned out to be a ham hock.
Ham hocks are weird. And kinda gross. You definitely realize you are using some part of an animal. As obvious as that sounds, I think in our modern day supermarket culture it is not a common experience.
I also wanted to use some of my homegrown soup beans. I have already tried my Tiger’s Eye beans, so I decided to use the Yin-Yang, or Orca, bean, which is a kind of calypso bean.
Here is what I did:
- Soaked 1 pound of beans in 4c boiled water for 2h.
- Meanwhile, in a stock pot I simmered the ham hock in 4c water with a bay leaf.
- After 2h I removed the ham hock, saved the meat, and gave the bones, rind, etc to the chickens.
- I drained the beans and added them to the stock.
- While the beans simmered (1h), I sauteed one diced onion, 2 carrots, 2 celery ribs then added them to the soup with two minced cloves of garlic. I added a diced Red Sangre potato, and the shredded pork, and cooked them in the soup an additional 20 min. Salt and pepper to taste.
Wow! We decided this meal is a real winner. The photo didn’t turn out (I only took one was cause I was anxious to eat it!), so you’ll have to take my word for it. The flavours were very simple, but very tasty. You could do a lot with this dish (herbs such as thyme, cream near end and a splash of balsamic, more veggies…)
Of course, a loaf of homemade no-knead bread perfectly complemented the soup. This loaf is very similar to the one described here, but the flour was 1:1:11 rye flour, whole wheat, and AP, aged 1 week in the fridge, and sooo tasty.
BTW: The title of this post is a line from a poem. I will be very impressed if anyone but my sister tells me they know it!