This is one of my favorites. My grandma made it a lot when I was growing up. I have my own variation.
Mine includes beer. Grandma made it every once in a while with cabbage. I suppose you could add carrots and/or onions. Maybe garbanzi beans too? Becky the awesome cook at camp makes it with noodle-style dumplings (I did try it that way once too), and some people make it wholly and horribly incorrectly with a creamy soup base. I have no idea why you would do that to this meal.
I don’t know what to call this. We always just called it “ham, beans, and potatoes” which is somewhat cumbersome… and could be about 4,000,000,000 other soups. In fact, I don’t even know if this is a soup or a stew. Both? Neither? What is the difference, anyway?
A lot of the time this would be made with leftover ham from Christmas, Easter, or whenever. When the hankering strikes now, I go to ham steaks with the little bone in. I don’t have a strict recipe, it’s more of a method.
This time, I put some Ham broth base (which can be a pain in the rear to find in the store sometimes) made slightly weaker than the directions, one cube each of chicken & beef bullion, a bottle of Yuengling Traditional Lager (I have used Straub American Amber for this too), and water in the pot and started it to boil on high. (Perhaps obviously if I had a leftover ham, I would start by boiling the bone and make the broth from that, add bullion if/as needed.) I also popped in some minched garlic, onion powder, and season-all, salt, and black pepper.
Then I cubed up 2 ham steaks, added them to the mix,.
Then I washed n’ cut up a not quite a 5 lb. bag of russet potatoes, and added that to the mix. (I have used Yukon Gold before and they’re delicious, but they seem to break down to starch easier.)
Then, I cheated and popped open 2 bags of microwave/steam ready fresh green beans, rinsed, then snapped/chopped, and added them to the mix. When i came to a boil, I popped it down to 8 on the burner dial, and let it boil for 20 minutes.
Then, I let it simmer on 2 for another 20 minutes, then I put it on low until dinner time.
We served it with fresh baked buttered bread form the local grocery store. The kids seemed to actually eat dinner this evening too, and they’re rather picky lately. Sometimes I make it the night before, this is the kind of stuff that’s always better the next day. I’m not sure if it’s Irish, German, American, or all of the above.
Do you make something like this? Post your variation(s) in the comments below.