Time: 30 minutes prep, 3 hours total
Ham hocks are often an overlooked cut of pork, but they add a delicious richness and body to winter soups! This recipe is also perfect to use if you have a little leftover potatoes. Fun fact - a version of this soup has been served in the US Senate for over 100 years. It was favorite of Knute Nelson, a Minnesota Senator in the early 1900s!
3 qt. chicken stock or water
1 lb. dried navy beans or Great Northern beans, rinsed well
1 meaty smoked ham hock (around 2 lb.)
4 T. butter or olive oil
2 large red onions, coarsely chopped
4 celery ribs, choppped
4 cloves fresh garlic, chopped
1/2 c. white cooking wine
1/2 c. fresh parsley, chopped
1 c. mashed potatoes
salt and pepper to taste
In a Dutch oven, put water / stock, beans, and ham hock. Cover and bring to a boil. Let simmer for 2 hours, or until the beans are softened.
In a saucepan, melt butter over medium-low heat. Add the onions and celery until the onions are translucent and softened, about 3-5 minutes. Add the garlic, cook just until fragrant, about 30 seconds. Add the wine and cook until it is reduced by about half, about 2 minutes.
When the beans are softened, remove the ham hock and place on a cutting board. Cool until easy to handle, then pull the meat off the bone and chop it. Return the meat to the pot, along with the onion mixture, parsley, and potatoes and simmer for another 30-60 minutes to let flavors meld. Season with salt and pepper; serve.
'What do I do with these ham hocks?' is probably one of the most common questions I get from people who have bought a half hog. Ham hocks are smoked and flavored just like ham. There is not a lot of meat on each hock, and to be able to remove the meat from the bone, you need to cook it low and slow. Using your crock pot to make this soup is an easy and flavorful way to use your hocks.
1 ham hock
1 qt. chicken stock / broth
1 onion, chopped
3 bay leaves
1 t. dried thyme
4-5 carrots, peeled and sliced
2 cans white beans, drained and rinsed
ground white pepper
Place ham hock in crock pot. Pour chicken stock over the hock. Add bay leaves and onion and set to low for 4 hours. Add carrots and beans and cook for another 2-3 hours on low. When meat is easily pulled away from the bone, remove meat and place on cutting board. When cool enough to handle, shred meat and then return to crock pot. Season with ground white pepper to taste. No additional salt will be necessary with the saltiness of the ham hock.
Recipes by Katrina
If I'm not doing chores, running kids around, or working, you are sure to find me in my kitchen! Feeding my family well is one of my favorite ways I love them. I am also a registered dietitian, so I tend toward recipes that feature whole foods bursting with flavor!