White Bean and Ham Soup

 

I am especially grateful for our mellow weather here in the Pacific Northwest with everything happening on the east coast right now.  We may get a lot of rain, but around here that’s really just “liquid sunshine”. 🙂

I feel very fortunate not to have to worry much about natural disasters happening here.   And really, all the rain just gives me more reasons to make soup. 🙂
I am a huge fan of soups because:
1. They’re delicious (or should be)
2. They’re easy to make (usually)
3. They are economical (at least the ones I make)
4. They make the house smell good while simmer. 🙂
5. I can make them ahead of time and we eat on time!

This one fits in… all those categories, and not to mention is a complete meal, no need for side dishes… well, maybe some baking powder biscuits… or cheddar drop biscuits… or whole wheat flax biscuits if you’re feeling fancy . 🙂
Leftovers rewarm well, but may be thicker so just add more water or chicken broth.
I used some leftover ham in ours, but you could use a ham steak, or even turkey ham if you really wanted.  I buy smoked ham hocks at my favorite local butcher, Butcher Boys , and I actually only use half since theirs has so much meat on them still.  Sometimes I don’t even add any ham to the soup and just use what is on the hock.  They are great about cutting them in half for me, and I keep some wrapped in butcher paper in the freezer at all times!

WHITE BEAN AND HAM SOUP
drizzle olive oil
1 lb ham, diced
1 white onion, chopped
3 carrots, peeled and chopped
2 celery ribs, chopped
4 garlic cloves, minced
4 cups chicken broth
6 cups water
1 smoked ham hock
1 pound dried navy beans, soaked overnight*
1 T minced fresh thyme, or 1 tsp dried
1/2 tsp pepper
3 T red wine vinegar

Heat oil in a pot over medium heat.
Add diced ham and cook for a few minutes, then add onion, carrots, and celery and cook until softened.
Add garlic and cook briefly until fragrant.
Add broth, water, ham hock, and beans.
Bring to a boil, then reduce heat and let simmer for about 1 1/2 hours until beans are tender and soup is slightly thickened.
Shred meat off the ham hock and add back to soup, along with thyme, pepper, and vinegar.

 *If you don’t have time to soak overnight you can cover beans with several inches of water and bring to a boil, then cover and let stand for an hour.

Recipe slightly adapted from Cook’s Country

White Bean and Ham Soup

Ingredients

  • drizzle olive oil
  • 1 lb ham, diced
  • 1 white onion, chopped
  • 3 carrots, peeled and chopped
  • 2 celery ribs, chopped
  • 4 garlic cloves, minced
  • 4 cups chicken broth
  • 6 cups water
  • 1 smoked ham hock
  • 1 pound dried navy beans, soaked overnight*
  • 1 T minced fresh thyme, or 1 tsp dried
  • 1/2 tsp pepper
  • 3 T red wine vinegar

Instructions

  • Heat oil in a pot over medium heat.
  • Add diced ham and cook for a few minutes, then add onion, carrots, and celery and cook until softened.
  • Add garlic and cook briefly until fragrant.
  • Add broth, water, ham hock, and beans.
  • Bring to a boil, then reduce heat and let simmer for about 1 1/2 hours until beans are tender and soup is slightly thickened.
  • Shred meat off the ham hock and add back to soup, along with thyme, pepper, and vinegar.
  • *If you don't have time to soak overnight you can cover beans with several inches of water and bring to a boil, then cover and let stand for an hour.
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