A hearty soup for the cold months!


  • 1 small whole ham hock (450g)
  • 160 g smoked ham/smoked streaky bacon
  • 300 g mixed beans like butter beans, chickpeas, kidney beans etc (soaked overnight then boiled in salted water until just soft)
  • 2 tsp paprika
  • 3 garlic cloves
  • 1 tsp whole black peppercorns
  • 3-4 potatoes (peeled and cubed)
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 2 celery sticks (chopped)
  • 2 onions (chopped)
  • 3 l water
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • flat leaf parsley to finish
  • 1 red chilli (de-seeded and chopped)
  • chilli paste/tom yum paste to finish


  • Boil the ham hock in the water until tender for approx 1 ½ hours
  • Strain and keep the stock then check for saltiness, if its too salty for a stock dilute with some water to taste
  • Cool the ham hock, trim and chop into pieces
  • Cut the raw smoked ham into similar sized pieces ready to cook
  • Add a little oil to a large pan
  • Sweat off the onion, garlic, chilli & celery until soft
  • Now add the ham hock meat, smoked ham and paprika and stir well
  • Add the stock which should be about 2 litres
  • Add the bay leaf and peppercorns
  • Simmer for about 1 hour then add the diced potato, mix well
  • Then simmer for approx ½ an hour to cook the potato on a low heat until the meat is soft and tender
  • Now add the precooked bean mixture ( or open a can or two of the beans and wash off then add those)
  • Finish with chopped parsley and a little chilli paste and season to taste
  • Serve with chopped chillies and chilli paste on the side and a nice bowl of sour cream.


Phelim's tip: To save time you can use canned beans rather than dried.