This dish is hearty, easy and tasty, created with men in mind. Meat cooked on the bone is so succulent and juicy. In this Portuguese bean soup, the meat from the ham hock contributes to the chunky texture, along with the vegetables and beans. Cabbage, added at the end, is optional - it's not everybody's favourite. But don't go without the chorizo or another spicy sausage. Traditionally, red kidney beans are used but I have opted for cannellini. If you feel the soup is a little thick, add more liquid. This is a hearty meal in itself that's great with hot bread to mop it up.
|1||Ham hock (Main)|
|1 clove||Crushed garlic|
|1||Celery stalk, sliced|
|2||Potatoes, medium-sized, peeled and chopped|
|2||Carrots, peeled and chopped|
|1 Tbsp||Ground paprika|
|¼ cup||Tomato paste|
|1 Ltr||Chicken stock|
|420 g||Cannellini beans, tin, drained and rinsed (Main)|
|100 g||Chorizo sausages, chopped|
|¼||Cabbages, shredded (optional)|
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- In a large pot, place the water and hock. Bring to the boil, then reduce heat and simmer for 1½ hours.
- Remove the hock and, when cool enough, pull off the meat and cut it into pieces. Discard the hock bone and cooking water.
- In the same pot, heat the oil and add the onion, garlic, celery, potatoes and carrots. Cook for 5-8 minutes until slightly softened.
- Add the paprika and stir through. Add the passata, paste and stock and cook until the vegetables are soft (20-25 minutes).
- Add the beans, macaroni and sugar and cook for 8-10 minutes until the macaroni is cooked.
- In a small frying pan, heat the oil, add the sausage and brown quickly. Toss the cabbage into the pan to wilt.
- Place the sausage and cabbage into the soup, stir and heat. Season and serve with crusty bread.