Ham and Bean Soup with Spring Dandelion Greens

 

Are you looking for a yummy way to use up your leftover Easter ham bone, I was too..

Into a nice big steel pot put your ham bone, a full peeled an cut into half or quarters big onion or two med ones, 6 large mushrooms, I used dried but fresh will work, two stalks of celery (trimmed) and one large peeled carrot cut into portions and one clove of garlic and one bay leaf.

Simmer on low for a good hour or two it’s not fussy that way..  If you are using canned beans, then you are good, if not.. if possible the night before soak your beans and if you want, even consider pre-cooking them for a 40 min to a 60 min in their own pot and then draining and rinsing them before using in the Ham soup

After your hour or more simmer, take out your ham bone and meat piece if any fell off and  debone and cut up your meat into small pieces.  Take out the Bay leaf Take a potato masher and smash up your veggies to get them into smaller size and then hit the pot with the stick blender.. this is your soup base and its delightful and filled with veggie goodness.

After its been blended smooth add back your cut up ham bits, three large peeled and cubed potato’s (another carrot diced if you want the orange color as well) and your beans.. Add salt, pepper and a good tsp of basil and give that a nice steady simmer (with the odd stir) for 30-40 min till everything is tender to taste test, both potato and bean 🙂

Now comes the fun part of this soup.. hit your spring yard for two big old Dandelion heads that are just starting to form and grow leaves, this is well before blooming or even thinking about flowers. cut it off level at the ground. Pick it though, remove any brown edges and wash it fully in cool water, then trim the end of the heart of it off and you will be left with a lovely bunch of fresh tender spring green, slice them across and add to your soup.

I found two bunches right for this pot, that would have been around 4 cups of greens before cutting them up.. add for the last five min of cooking and they will cook in and melt into the soup.

 

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2 Responses to Ham and Bean Soup with Spring Dandelion Greens

  1. D > Mmmmm! What I take from this yummy recipe is the idea of popping out, 10mins or so before the ham and veg cooked, to get some tender greens from the garden, to add last minute. And in particular, to use non-cultivated greens, which at this time of year can (only just now) be dandelion, but also I’d try sorrel, sweet cicely – a mixture of things, as pretty much everything is tender right now.

    • My Sorrels are just starting to show themselves but in another week or two and o yes! Sweet Cicely is so wonderful.. I am so excited that all my seakale and my skirret made it though this hard winter under their straw bed covers.

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