A leftover ham bone and a few vegetables and herbs make for an easy ham stock.
Boy, this smells good when it’s cooking on your stove. Perfect for a snow-covered, frozen day like today. Indianapolis is officially under 12 inches of snow and temperatures have dropped to 15 below.
Power flickered on and off last night. Our whole street was without power from around 4 to about 6 pm. During that time, everyone went outside to shovel and we watched a few Adventure Time episodes on the laptop. I’m very thankful that it came back on and stayed on throughout the night. It flickered a few times but as of right now, we still have it and so do our neighbors.
Rahul went outside to shovel the back deck, walkways and the driveway at least 6 times. It’s easier to shovel 3 inches a few times than it is to move 10 inches once. I shoveled on Friday for one hour and thought I was going to need to be rescued out of my yard. Shoveling is tough work.
Dollar wasn’t sure why he couldn’t help, too.
The snow was putting so much extra weight on the trees around us that several large tree limbs fell RIGHT BEHIND MY SUBARU. They were close calls. I moved my car and parked it in front of a neighbours house that had less chance of tree limbs falling and so far, so good.
Of course, Brandy was just fine with it all.
So, onto the ham stock.
Ham stock is easy because you have one large bone to work with, unlike a chicken or turkey in which you have a whole carcass to boil. It is a cleaner process and requires less effort. You can use ham stock in the same way you would chicken. I used it in a black eyed pea and collard green soup I made on New Year’s Day.
I always keep dried bay leaves and whole black peppercorns in my spice cabinet for times where I am making stock or pickling vegetables. I do not make my own stock that often, partially because I go through it so much I don’t think I could keep up with my own demand.
Not sure what to do with a ham before you use the bone? My bourbon and molasses picnic ham is simple and creates a juicy and tender ham. Then, this ham and bean pasta salad adds vegetables for a pop of color to this salad that comes together with a light vinaigrette.
- One ham bone
- 2 celery stalks
- 3 medium carrots
- 1 small yellow onion
- 12-15 springs of parsley
- 1/2 tsp black peppercorns
- 2 tsp kosher salt
- 2 bay leaves
Wash the carrots and celery. Roughly chop and add to a large (7 quart) stock pot or dutch oven with the ham bone. Toss in the rest of the ingredients. Fill the pot with water to cover the ham bone. Place on the stove over high heat and bring to a boil, then simmer for two hours.
Strain the stock through a fine sive and discard the vegetables. Pick off the ham from the bone and save for another dish. Pour into a sealable container and place in the refrigerator for one week or freeze for up to one year.
When thawing, use a spoon and remove any fat solids that build up near the surface.