Wednesday, January 12, 2011

I Love Me Some Jon "Ham" (and bean) Soup...

I fell love in with Jon Hamm ever since I first saw him on 30 Rock as Liz Lemon's handsome, but dumb, boyfriend.  At the time, I have never seen an episode of Mad Men.  But a couple of months ago when Chris and I started to watch Mad Men, I was hooked.  And Jon Hamm became my new obsession.

I decided to dedicate this recipe to my beloved, John.  We had some leftover holiday ham in our freezer and since I've been meaning to cook up some ham and bean soup for awhile, I thought why not take this opportunity.

I started by dicing up some celery and potatoes.  Note how I left the skin on these starchy little monsters.  MOST of the nutrition is in the skin, so I urge you to wash them well and keep them on.  Texturally, it makes the soup more interesting.
Next came the ham.  I took whatever meat I could off of the spiral ham bone and diced them up into bite sized pieces.
Here's the spiral ham bone itself.  Save it!!!  It'll go into the soup mixture later.
I sauteed the veggies first in vegetable oil until the celery started to sweat a little, then added the ham.  Cook until the ham starts to brown a tiny bit.

Add chicken stock (or water), your choice of canned beans, and tomatoes into the veggies and ham (as well as the bone).  Then add the following seasonings to your liking: dried basil, bay leaf (3), cumin, parsley, cayene pepper (optional), and chipotle chili powder (also optional).
Cover and bring to boil.  Once boiling, bring to a slow simmer.  Simmer anywhere from 45 minutes to an hour and a half.  The key to tomato based soups is to slow cook.  The longer you cook the soup base, the thicker and darker the tomatoes get...and the yummier as well.
And voila!  I decided to add some cheese to mine and it was great!  For my first time, I think the soup turned out great.  You can add pasta to this as well if you feel like you need more substance.  I would boil any pasta you want to add in a separate pot of water and add as you wish rather than cooking it in with the soup.  I like my pastas al dente...but that's just me.

And just because I can...I'm going to post this for your reading pleasure...
Oh Jon...I just want to eat you up!  You're such a Hamm!!! :)


  1. omg cindi your ham bean soup look sooo soo nommy!! i'm going to have to try that!!

  2. mmmmmmmmm! Thanks for posting that yummy pic. The soup looks good too! Haha! I am also in love with John Hamm. Mad men is one of my favorite shows. The soup seriously does look great. Thanks for the recipe.

  3. Lisa - Hopefully it's easy enough for you to follow. I'm sorry for not providing any measurements but I noticed with cooking, I can't follow recipes. I just wanna know what goes into the dish and tweak as I go along. :)

    Kristin - Haha...I love me some John Hamm! His character on Mad Men is so deep and multi faceted. Love it!

  4. Wow--that soup looks so good and super easy! THanks for the great recipe! =) I've never seen an episode of Mad Men, but I loved Jon Hamm in 30 Rock...hilarious!

  5. Thank you for the recipe! I think i may have mentioned to you that i don't eat pork. But i DO eat ham (strange isn't it?). I've been using supermarket-bought chicken stock for my soups as well, but feel guity for using it as it's not "genuine". I do want to one day make my own one day.
    Nice photos too! - you really are getting pro at this.

  6. ^ just realised my sentence did not make sense. Sorry i was talking to the hubby and typing at the same time!

  7. You're so cute, Cindi! This soup sounds delicious. And I will definitely forward you some info on my cousin's wedding photographer -- I'm almost certain she has a website, so I'll send the link your way : )

  8. Jenni - It is really easy...I never cook over complicated foods so rest assured, it'll be a breeze for you!

    Jen - Oh my, I cook with chicken stock a lot so if I had to make it every time from scratch, I'd be cooking the whole day! I do make my own pork stock though, which is very yummy! The organic ones I buy are actually pretty good. I stick with the low sodium ones usually but these are from Costco.

    Jamie - Thanks, Jamie! I look forward to looking at your cousin's pictures!