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Ham hock and flageolet bean soup

Serves 4-6

If you are going to boil a ham hock, then it makes sense to create a hearty soup like this with the stock.

60g flageolet beans soaked overnight
30g butter
1 medium onion, peeled, halved and finely chopped
A few sprigs of thyme
1.5ltrs ham cooking liquid
1 medium leek, halved, cut into rough 1cm squares and washed
1 large carrot, peeled and cut into 1cm dice
A few leaves of green cabbage, washed and cut into 1cm squares
80-100g or more of ham hock trimmings, cut into rough 1cm chunks
Freshly ground black pepper

Melt the butter in a heavy-bottomed saucepan and gently cook the onion for a few minutes until soft but without letting it colour. Add the thyme and the drained flageolet beans and ham cooking liquid, bring to the boil and simmer for 15 minutes then add the leek and carrot and continue simmering until the flageolet beans are tender.

Add the cabbage and ham hock pieces, season if necessary or just with pepper and simmer for 5-6 minutes until the cabbage is cooked.