White beans and ham hocks are used to make the soup known as White Bean and Ham Hock Soup.
Other names for this soup include Senate soup, navy bean soup, and ham bone soup (the latter of which is known for being thickened with mashed potatoes).
There are various variations, regardless of what you want to call it.
While some of them preserve the beans in a state that is more or less whole and have a liquid consistency, others change as the beans break down in the soup and become more creamy.
In my adaptation, I add aromatic vegetables, tender whole, puréed navy beans, fresh and dried herbs, and smoked ham hocks to create a calming soup that is akin to a stew and is packed with layers of flavor and texture.
A thick, meaty soup that is undeniably satisfying results from the addition of freshly ground black pepper and chopped parsley leaves to this White Bean and Ham Hock Soup. On the other hand, I believe the next day is much better. It will dramatically thicken up in the refrigerator over the course of the night, giving it a more creamier consistency than it had before.
- 450 grams.Of dried navy beans
- 4.5 liters.Of water, at room temp.
- Salt, to your taste.
- 2 Tbsp.Of extra-virgin olive oil.
- 1 large yellow onion – roughly chopped.
- 2 small carrots – roughly chopped.
- 2 celery ribs – roughly chopped.
- 2 medium garlic cloves – roughly chopped.
- Fresh thyme; I used 2 springs.
- Finely chopped Parsley.
- One bay leaf.
- 2 large smoked ham hocks.
- Freshly cracked black pepper.
1 – First, you need to add beans and 3 liters of water to a 4-quart saucier. Season with salt. Over high heat, bring to a boil. Take it off the heat, cover it, and let it sit for an hour. Then leave them aside to dry.
2 – Meanwhile, heat oil over medium heat in a Dutch oven until shimmering. Add the onion, carrots, and celery, and cook, stirring periodically, for about 10 minutes, or until the vegetables are softened.
3 – Add the garlic and cook, stirring often, for about 60 seconds, until the garlic smells good. Put the vegetables in a small bowl that can take the heat and set it aside.
4 – In the same Dutch oven, combine the remaining water with thyme, chopped parsley, bay leaf, and ham hocks.
5 – Bring to a boil over high heat, then turn down the heat to keep a slow simmer. Cover and cook for about an hour, or until the ham hocks are soft.
6 – Add the beans, stir, and bring the heat back to a gentle simmer. If necessary, adjust the heat. Cover and cook, stirring every half hour, for about 2 hours, or until the beans are soft and the meat is falling off the bones.
7 – Throw away the thyme and bay leaf. Put the ham hocks on a cutting board and set them aside for about 20 minutes, or until they are cool enough to handle. Using a slotted spoon, move 2 1/2 cups of the beans to a medium bowl that can handle the heat and set them aside.
8 – Once the ham hocks are cool, use a sharp knife to roughly chop the meat. Throw away the skin, bones, and fat. Set aside.
9 – Using an immersion blender, blend soup until smooth. Put the beans, meat, and vegetables that you set aside back into the pot and stir to mix.
10 – Bring back to a gentle simmer, then cook, stirring every so often, for about 20 minutes, until the vegetables are soft and the ham is heated through. Salt and pepper can be added to taste.