Hearty ham soup provides great flavour and protein and is perfect for using up that left over meat from special occasions without turning it into a sandwich!
1 Tbsp olive oil
75 g lean shoulder/rindless eye bacon, diced
1 onion, thinly sliced
2 cloves garlic, crushed
500g ham hocks
1 400g can diced tomatoes
5 c chicken stock (salt-reduced)
1 Bay leaf
1 sprig thyme
1 400g can cannellini beans, drained
Natural yoghurt/lite sour cream to
2 Tbsp mint leaves, chopped
1. Heat a large saucepan over low heat and add olive oil, bacon and onion. Cook until the onion is soft (about 10 minutes). Add the garlic and cook for a further minute.
2. Add smoked ham hock, tomatoes, chicken stock, bay leaf and thyme. Season with freshly ground black pepper, cover and simmer on a very low heat (the liquid should be barely moving) for 2 hours or until the meat is falling off the hock. Top soup up with water or more stock if necessary.
3. Remove ham hock, discard the skin and bones and shred the meat. Return meat to soup with cannellini beans and cook until all is heated through. Remove bay leaf and thyme stalk.
4. Serve into bowls and add a dollop of natural yoghurt/lite sour cream (optional) and chopped mint.