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Ham stock

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For some reason, I am in a major soup mood this winter. 


Today I am making ham stock with the idea of making soup for dinner tonight. 


Right now I have 2 ham hocks simmering in a big pot of water with

1 large onion quartered

2 ribs of celery cut into 3 pieces, leaves and all

2 medium carrots cut into 3 pieces

Whole peppercorns

2 bay leaves


I'll let this simmer for about 4 hours or so,then strain out all the spent veggies and seasonings. I'll season with salt near the end since I'm never sure how salty the ham hocks will be. I'll pick over the hocks once they cool to extract all of the meat to put back in the soup. 


As for the soup, I've got half a head of cabbage in the fridge plus another carrot. Not sure what else yet. We'll see how I feel. I've got a whole bunch of different frozen veggies in the freezer.


And I've got sliced deli ham and Swiss cheese in the fridge too. So grilled ham and cheese to go with the soup. 

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dowling gram

When my son was young there were times when money was tight. The grocery would give away pork hocks because they wouldn't sell if they put them for sale. They also gave away soup bones but you have to pay for them today. Well I always took as many as they had. I boiled them up,  let them cool, put the juice in the fridge to cool and picked off all the meat. Then skimmed the fat off the cooled broth. Some meat went into the freezer for future meals. That night we'd have a great pork stew chock full of vegetables from our garden. It was a favorite in our family and it cost only my time. I don't make it any more. The pork hocks now cost more than I'd be willing to pay and there'd be only me to eat it.


Thanks for reminding me of fond memories

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These were set at a very good price, which is what made me end up buying them on a whim.  :)


Soup stock had great flavor.  For the soup, I ended up doing


red bell pepper

green beans (frozen)

cauliflower (frozen)


a little carrot

Bits and pieces of the ham hock


I didn't realize that Mr Fuzzy had eaten the rest of the sliced ham Saturday night, so the grilled sandwich ended up being bacon and cheese.  :)


It did make me wish I had beans.  I used to use ham hocks to make ham and beans all the time.  My mom usually used a ham bone, but Mr Fuzzy isn't much of a ham eater (contrary to Saturday night) and a whole ham for even two people is a bit much.  So ham hocks it was.


I stuck the rest of the stock in the freezer for now.  I foresee more soup in my future.  :)

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