Wednesday, January 5, 2011

Barely a Recipe: Black-Eyed Pea Hambone Soup

My Southern roots require that we eat black-eyed peas on New Year's Day each year. Fortunately, if you combine them with a leftover hambone, it's just about the easiest soup you can make!

Now I know, some of you are shaking your heads and thinking that you don't have a hambone and you aren't planning on buying one. Don't let this stop you! I have acquired numerous hambones from friends and relatives by politely asking, "Do you ever make soup with your leftover ham bone? It's really easy and makes bean soup taste fantastic!" When you say this, the person will either a) already have soup plans b) take your recommendation to make soup or c) offer YOU the hambone. Then you can wrap it and freeze it until you are ready to use it. :)

  • 1 lb black-eyed peas (I use dried) Or 15-Bean Soup mix, found at stores
  • 1 hambone, ideally with a little ham still attached (alternatives: diced ham steak, Polish or Italian sausage, etc.) OR leftover ham
  • Water
  • Onion, diced (optional)
  • 1 can diced tomatoes (optional)
  • Juice of 1 lemon (or 2 Tablespoons lemon juice)
The night before: Soak beans under 4 inches of water in a pot for at least 8 hours.

Pour bean/water mixture through a colander to drain beans. Rinse beans under cold water, return to pot. Add 8 cups of water. Drop hambone into pot with beans and water. Bring to a boil, then cover and simmer for 2 hours. Remove Hambone to cutting board and cool 10-15 minutes. Pull off ham pieces, shred with fingers, and return to pot. Add onion, diced tomatoes, and lemon juice. Reheat and serve.

We like our black-eyed peas over white rice and served with cornbread. My favorite topping is mayonnaise.

I was very low energy on New Year's Day, but I still managed to pull this meal together. It was delicious, despite the fact that it's Barely a Recipe!

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