Looking for a simple hearty lunch or dinner recipe? Try this warm and smoky soup made with ham, leek, peas and potatoes.
I stumbled upon the ham hock I used in making this soup while browsing my favourite little deli shop in our town, Blue Ginger. It sat there, on a shelve looking very lonely and so I thought to rescue it. It was a fair decision since my soup turned out very flavourful.
The ham is from a local free-range farm, The Farm House. I love buying their products. They are always fresh and delicious. Being a bit particular about knowing where my meat and poultry come from I try to stick with free-range and organic produce as much as possible.
1 leek washed and thinly sliced ( discard the green ends )
700-800g ham hock ( 1 large or 2 smaller size )
800g potatoes peeled and cubed ( 4 cups )
8-10 cups chicken, beef or vegetable stock or water ( cube stock is fine to use )
2 bay leaves
2-4 springs fresh thyme
1 cup frozen green peas
Salt and freshly cracked pepper to taste
- Melt butter in a large pot.
- Add sliced leek and saute over a medium heat for a few minutes, until leek is translucent and starting to lightly brown.
- Add stock or water, potatoes, ham hock, bay leaves and thyme springs.
- Season with cracked pepper ( since the ham hock is already salty you might not need to add any salt ). Cover with a lid and simmer over a low heat for 1,5 hours turning the hock occasionally.
- Add frozen peas and cook for a further hour or till meat starts to fall off the bone.
- Remove the hock from the pot and let to cool, then remove meat from the bone with the help of a fork or a knife and shred into bite size pieces.
- Lightly crush potatoes with a back of a spoon still leaving them a little bit chunky.
- Return meat to the pot.
Season with salt if needed.
Serve hot with bread or without.