Ham & Lentil Soup


One of my New Year’s Resolutions (or – thoughts I tend to get more of at this time of year regarding what I’d like to do more or less of) is to eat more soup. It’s important to have achievable goals. And to eat more vegetables.

Here is yet another extreme leftover makeover wherein the sloppy seconds almost trumps the original: any soup started from a meaty ham bone, particularly one containing black beans or lentils. This ham first made its debut while the family painted across the street – a great easy meal for a crowd that costs less than ordering pizza. Honestly. (Ham – $15. Biscuits from scratch – $1. Having your sister move in across the street – priceless. Although that really doesn’t have much to do with the ham, but it sounds nice.)

Also – do pizza leftovers take care of dinner another night? I didn’t think so. Pizza crust soup is nowhere near as appetizing.

Ham & Lentil Soup

1 ham bone, with lots of meat left clinging to it
+ 1 chopped onion
+ 3 chopped carrots
+ half a bunch of celery, chopped whole from the leafy end, including the leaves
+ 2 cups dried green or brown lentils
+ 1 L beef or chicken broth
+ 1 L water
+ bay leaf
+ large soup pot or slow cooker (6 hours or so on low)
= happy gut.

(Sorry for the abbreviated post – I was working late on one relating to weight and the new year and all that, and it became apparent closing in on midnight that I wasn’t going to finish it proper-like. And I didn’t sleep at all last night, panicking over the sudden realization that I have to address a sold-out Jack Singer Concert Hall in less than a week and nothing fits.)


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17 comments on “Ham & Lentil Soup

  1. Alicen
    January 6, 2010 at 5:41 am

    I LOVE how you finished your recipe with “= happy gut.” That’s how I feel about good food too! I have a ham in the freezer that I might just have to dig out and cook, so that I can turn the leftovers into this Happy Gut Soup!

  2. Cheryl
    January 6, 2010 at 7:43 am

    Hey, today is Epiphany, the last true day of Christmas, so don’t worry about the weight until tomorrow. At least that’s what I’ve told myself after scarfing down too many of those amazing biscuits from the year-end wrap up. Today I’m going to try Cheryl’s peroghy recipe with mushroom/smoked gouda and roasted garlic/carmelized onion/mashed potato/parmesan fillings.

  3. Cheryl F
    January 6, 2010 at 7:48 am

    Ok, changing my screen name as I wouldn’t want anyone to think I’m taking credit for Cheryl’s recipe…

  4. Erica B.
    January 6, 2010 at 8:39 am

    The one thing in my closet that fits well right now is my yoga pants. Time for me to make good on 10+years of resolutions.

    In the meantime and because ya can’t lose weight like you’re cramming for finals – you’re hosting, being comfortable in your own clothes does a girl good – go splurge on a new outfit!

  5. stacey snacks
    January 6, 2010 at 9:03 am

    I did a lentil post today too!
    I made David Lebovitz’s Lentille du Puy Salad.
    Love em!

  6. Amanda
    January 6, 2010 at 9:22 am

    I’m super excited for Anthony Bourdain next week, and when I found out you’d be introducing, I was estatic. It’s still the begining of January, so there’s alot of muffin top forgivness still going around, don’t worry about it!

    But with all my holiday weight still hanging around, I really wished I bought this t-shirt: http://www.flickr.com/photos/cupcakecannibal/4123340222/

  7. Laurie
    January 6, 2010 at 11:52 am

    Oh, Julie, thank you for this one! This is how I like pea and ham soup – just the peas and ham with onions, garlic, carrot (in tiny bits or grated) and celery (also small). I love the taste of bay leaf in ham soup. I don’t like those pea and ham soups with things in them, you know? Like corn and stuff. Happy tummy is right!

    Cheryl, you evil woman, you’ve made me crave things I’m trying to stay away from to lose my Silly Season gut!! It sounds so delicious.

    I’ve made a killer soup from the left over chicken bones (from the third Christmas dinner) with left over vegetables and the addition of new vegetables, onions, garlic, and pot barley. It’s filling and satisfying and comfort-food type goopy and nummy.

  8. Evelyn in Canada
    January 6, 2010 at 12:13 pm

    I just used a ham bone for the first time yesterday. I always associated ham bones with pea soup (snet) and I hate that so I’ve always thrown the bone out. I slowcooked it in a meatless chili yesterdays and it was awesome! Luckily there’s leftovers for right now. I’ll never throw out a ham bone again.

  9. Barb
    January 6, 2010 at 3:22 pm

    Well, you’re certainly on the right track with your eating now. Can’t ask for much more than that. Soup looks fabulous and I’ll bet you will too on that special night. Hey, do you have an extended closet now that your sister is so close?

  10. JulieVR
    January 6, 2010 at 3:25 pm

    Sadly no. We’re not the same size! I’d love to say that this soup is an indication of what I eat all the time – just because I made a big pot of lentil soup doesn’t mean I’ve been completely foregoing other stuff.. I’m working on it!

  11. carol
    January 6, 2010 at 3:38 pm

    Hi Julie,
    Another thought for the old ham bone..Red beans and rice. We do a big ham (not turkey people), scallop potatoes and lentil soup for Christmas Eve…a family tradition from my German great grandmother. My kids (the grown up kind) expect this (red beans) after Christmas and there better be some hanging out in the freezer when they are back in town. Easy to make. I adapted a recipe from a member of the Preservation Hall Jazz Band. Think I’ll spring for some cornbread tonight too…look at what fits in the closet tomorrow, maybe Sunday.
    Thanks for all the good reads in 2009…more please in 2010!!

  12. Cheryl Arkison
    January 6, 2010 at 3:59 pm

    Cheryl F, I thought it was odd that you might refer to yourself in the third person! I knew what you meant. Love the mushroom/smoked gouda idea!

    We’re eating borscht and pyrohy with bacon and kale tonight.

  13. Sook
    January 7, 2010 at 2:35 pm

    I’ve been seeing lots of lentil recipes lately and shame on me, I still haven’t had any, ever! I will have to give this recipe a try. Looks so delicious.

  14. Robyn in Mountain (Ontario that is)
    January 8, 2010 at 9:00 am

    Yes me too, more soup in 2010! And more beans and lentils!
    When nothing fits, it’s time to go shopping!!! You deserve a new outfit.

  15. Marisa
    January 20, 2010 at 6:46 am

    I can’t believe I’ve never made soup from a piece of ham. I really need to remedy that situation (and fast!) because I simply adore the rich flavour it imparts to soup.

  16. Penney Kome
    August 31, 2010 at 2:10 pm

    Our slow cooker is busy at Christmas too. First we throw the turkey carcass in (scraped-clean) with mirepoix, to make stock for endless gravy. But for New Year’s we follow the Southern tradition and for good luck we cook black-eyed peas with onions and ham shanks in the crockpot, and add greens at the last minute. Tradition says feasting on this dish brings prosperity: a coin for every bean and a folding bill for every green you eat.

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