Tuesday, 5 January 2016

Christmas Leftovers 1: Ham Bone

Still got the bone from your leg of ham? Your pea and ham soup can be made with an every day ham bone; it doesn’t have to be cured and that means less salt.

Make sure you don’t strip the bone of all the meat; you will need it in your soup.

For my Australian readers. Did you know ham bones freeze just fine and they can be used to make a simple but yummy pea and ham soup when the cold of winter comes later in the year. So put that bone away until winter and store this easy recipe somewhere.  Or given the weather we are currently experiencing in Sydney it may be suitable now.

Allow plenty of time for this recipe. I don’t fuss much with my pea and ham soup but I do always soak the split peas overnight then rinse them next morning. The packet says you don’t have to I think it is better.

You also need to allow time for the soup to cook slowly then cool before removing the bone and the meat.

So this is how I make my soup

Put the ham in a pot, cover it with water and add split peas. I like the green ones but the choice is yours.

Bring to the boil and simmer for about 1 ½ - 2 hours so the meat falls off the bone.

Allow to cool.

Now you get to play like a child in mud. I find it more reliable to just get my hands in there (super clean of course) and lift out the bone. If you left plenty of meat on it lumps may fall off back into the pot. Strip all meat left on the bone and retrieve any fallen pieces from the soup.

Double check there are no pieces of bone or gristle left in the pot. Shred the ham meat with your fingers and return to soup. Give it a stir. If it is too thick add some more water; too thin let it simmer on a very low heat so the excess water evaporates. Remember if you leave it in the fridge it will thicken and need some more water anyway.

Reheat when you are ready to eat a yummy meal and warm up.

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