I’m the kind of girl who could eat soup everyday…there’s just something about warm, comforting, filling food! It doesn’t hurt that its been cold in the Midwest which heightens my need for more soup. Last week Aldi’s had $5 off coupon on their hams and you might not know that Mr. C LOVES ham of any kind. My favorite part is the ham bone that I can make soup out of..ham, barley and vegetable soup.
My moto is never let a good bone go to waste, ham bones, chicken bones, beef bones etc. always makes the best soup! The bone marrow provides great depth of flavor to any soup. When I was a child we would knock the marrow out of a bone and spread it on a slice of bread, top with salt and pepper, which I still do to this day. Very yummy!
One of my favorite soups using a ham bone is navy bean soup which my Momma made the best I’ve ever tasted. She would used leftover mashed potatoes to thicken the soup up. Since Mr. C isn’t a fan I seldom make it for myself.
The longest time making the soup is letting the ham bone and simmer for two hours, or use ham hocks with chicken broth. If you don’t have a leftover ham bone ham hocks are a good substitute. If you don’t like barley you could make Ham and Lentil soup or if you have leftover chicken make Chicken and Barley soup.
We’re big vegetables eater and using them in soup is another great way to get more servings of veggies. This is a great soup to use any kind of veggies you like.
Enjoy!!! Its great with buttered saltines for crunch!
Ham, Barley and Vegetable Soup
10 cups water or 10 cups low sodium chicken broth
3 pounds smoked ham hocks or use leftover ham bone
3/4 pound russet potatoes (about 2 medium), peeled, diced
1 14-ounce can diced tomatoes in juice
1 medium onion, chopped
2 medium carrots, peeled, chopped
1 cup chopped celery
3/4 cup pearl barley, rinsed
2 teaspoons dried oregano
8 ounces fresh green beans, trimmed, cut into 1/2-inch piece
Using Ham Bone and water: Place ham bone and water and bring to boil and simmer for 1 1/2 to 2 hours covered. Remove ham bone from broth. Remove meat from bones. Save meat.
Add diced potatoes, tomatoes with juices, onion, carrots, celery, barley, and oregano. Bring to boil. Reduce heat to medium-low; simmer uncovered until barley is tender, about 1 hour.
Add leftover ham meat and green beans; simmer until beans are tender, about 15 minutes. Season soup to taste with salt and pepper.
Using Ham Hocks and Chicken Stock: Bring broth and ham hocks to boil in large pot. Cover, reduce heat to medium-low and simmer 15 minutes.
Add diced potatoes, tomatoes with juices, onion, carrots, celery, barley, and oregano. Bring to boil. Reduce heat to medium-low; simmer uncovered until meat and barley are tender, about 1 hour.
Using tongs, remove ham hocks from soup. Cut meat off bones and chop coarsely. Return meat to soup; discard bones.
Either can be prepared 2 days ahead. Refrigerate uncovered until cold, then cover and refrigerate. Bring to simmer before continuing.) Add green beans; simmer until beans are tender, about 15 minutes. Season soup to taste with salt and pepper.