Tuesday, December 30, 2014

Ham Bone Stock

As I mentioned in the last post I was lucky enough to receive the leftover ham bone from the Christmas ham.  The ham bone is so huge I had to take off the knuckles in order for it to even fit in my crockpot and I cooked that ham bone all night long.  It has been a long time since I cooked anything overnight and I forgot how the delicious smell seeps into your dreams and somewhat narrates what you dream about.  Anyway this stock is the first step to what I'm calling my 48 hour soup.  I cooked the stock for 12 hours and now it is in the fridge waiting for the fat to collect on the top (about 10 hours).  Then I have to soak the northern beans for 12 hours and prep and assemble the ham, bean, and sauerkraut soup I am making.  The soup will then cook for about 8 hours and we will feast on it NYE.  We also plan on playing Settlers of Catan, a board game that I haven't ever played but have been told it is addicting-ly fun!  I adapted this basic stock recipe, enjoy!

Servings 8

The Ingredients

1 large ham bone and any fat and scraps left from trimming your ham

10-12 cups water (approximate)

2 onions, peeled and halved

2-3 carrots, washed and cut into half (no need to peel)

2 celery ribs, leaves attached, cut in half

5 garlic cloves, peeled

10-15 peppercorns

2 bay leaves

The Process

1.  Place all ingredients in your largest slow cooker, adding enough water to cover the ham bone and fill the crock. Cook on high for 6-12 hours.

2.  The longer you cook it, the better it will be, so I recommend 12 hours if you can.

3.  Remove and discard ham bone and vegetables and spices. You can do this by fishing out the larger pieces with a slotted spoon, and straining the broth through a mesh strainer.

4.  Pour strained stock into one or more containers and refrigerate overnight. Once the stock cools, the fat will congeal on the top and it can be lifted off and thrown away.

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