CHEF JEFF: One Byte At A Time — Ham, Bean And Potato Soup

An Easter Sunday ham dinner is a tradition in many families. And a day-after-Easter ham bean soup is probably on the menu for just as many families, maybe more, especially in these days when our usual large gatherings are whittled down due to social distancing amid the COVID-19 pandemic.

The spiral ham that Therese and I prepared Sunday is going to provide a good many meals down the road, since we dined alone. Much of the meat will be vacuum-sealed and frozen for later use, as well as some of it going into the pot of Ham, Bean and Potato Soup that’s simmering on the on the stove.

This isn’t your traditional bean soup. First, it doesn’t require soaking beans overnight. Canned great northerns take the place of the usual navy or pinto beans. Second, it’s loaded with veggies, including potatoes, carrots and peas. Finally, it’s ready to go in about an hour.

Soup’s on!

Ham, Bean and Potato Soup
¾ pound fully cooked ham, cubed
1 medium onion, chopped
2 garlic cloves, minced
2 tablespoons butter
2 15½-ounce cans great northern beans, rinsed and drained
3 cups chicken broth
2 cups water
1 cup diced peeled potatoes
¾ cup diced carrots
¾ cup diced celery
¼ teaspoon pepper
½ cup frozen peas
2 tablespoons minced fresh parsley.
1 bay leaf
In a large saucepan, saute the ham, onion and garlic in butter until onion is tender. Add the next seven ingredients; cover and simmer until vegetables are tender, about 30 minutes. Add peas and cook until heated through, about 5 minutes longer. Serve.

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