Every year for Easter I make a ham. It’s pretty much the only time of year that I buy ham; we like it, it’s just not something we eat often. Although I buy the smallest ham I can find, we still always end up with LOTS of leftovers. Leftovers are not a problem though because ham freezes really well and there’s lots of things you can do with it.
I thought I’d share several blog posts about what I made with my leftover ham this time around! First one up is Hambone Soup.
When you buy a ham, go for one with a bone in it. I think mine said “partially de-boned” or something like that, but it still had a nice size bone. That’s important for two reasons; first, I think hams with the bone in are juicier, and second, the ham bone makes GREAT ham broth so don’t throw it away!
I was going to follow a recipe I have for ham and bean soup but then realized I didn’t have any beans, so I just threw together a ham and veggie soup instead. It turned out to be delicious!
To make the ham broth, I let the ham bone (and the meat clinging to it) simmer all afternoon with chopped onion, garlic, carrots, celery and some salt. I didn’t want to have soup for dinner that day so when it was done I strained the broth, let it cool a bit and put it in the fridge for later. I threw out the ham bone but saved all the cooked veggies for Caleb to eat… he LOVED them!
A day or two later I decided to make the soup for dinner. I put the broth on the stove and added some ham, chopped potatoes and veggies. I let it simmer for an hour or two and it was ready! I added a bit more water because it had simmered down a little and it still was very flavorful and delicious.
While the soup was simmering I whipped up some bread sticks using this easy recipe that I found online. Mine turned out looking a little funny (I think I rolled the dough out too long) but they were super yummy and went really well with the soup.
I enjoyed this meal so much that I’m thinking I should buy ham more often just for the ham bone! I still have two other recipes to make with my leftover ham though so stay tuned; I’ll be posting about them soon!