Green Beans and Ham

This is simple, down-home food. It was one of my favorites growing up and still is now. It's simple and a really great way to get kids to eat veggies - the beans taste too good to resist. I like this best served exactly like Mom used to do it - ham sliced on a platter, beans and potatoes swimming in a rich broth, and sides of biscuits or rolls, homemade jam, and marinated fresh vegetables (what I call quick pickles) to complete the meal.
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I'll list the ingredients exactly like I made this for dinner tonight. You can vary the amounts of everything to suit your family needs.

Ingredients:

  • 1 (4 lb.) ham
  • 2 lbs. fresh green beans, stem end trimmed off, broken in half
  • 4 medium large potatoes, peeled and cubed
  • water
  • ham flavored bouillon

Quick Pickles:

  • 1 large tomato, in small wedges
  • 1 small onion, cut in half and sliced
  • 1 cucumber, peeled (if you like it that way) and cut in thin slices
  • 1 handful green grapes
  • 1 handful red grapes
  • 2 Tbsp. olive oil
  • 1/3 cup red wine vinegar
  • 1/2 - 2/3 cup water
  • 1 Tbsp. sugar
  • 1 tsp. basil
  • 1/4 tsp. salt
  • fresh pepper

Directions:

Put the ham in a roasting pan and add water to come about half-way up on it. Roast it at 325 degrees F for 1 1/2 hours. Check the water periodically to make sure it's not cooking dry. You may have to add a little more water, but don't add too much because you want the richest broth you can get.

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While it is roasting, prepare the quick pickles. You can use any veggies you like. Sliced peppers taste good and yellow peppers make the pickles even prettier. Hot peppers add a little zing, and are especially good with the grapes (grapes add a really nice note - vinegary vegetables, then the sweet crunch of the grapes. Adding them is the only thing I change from Mom's meal).

Cut them into bite size pieces. Put them in a bowl. Mix the rest of the ingredients in a jar with a tight lid. Shake them until the sugar dissolves, then pour over the veggies. Stir them from time to time to make sure they all get time in the marinade.

When the ham is done, take it out of the broth and wrap it in aluminum foil. This will keep it nice and hot until you serve it. Put the prepared green beans in the broth, and add water to come close to covering the beans. Taste it, and add enough ham bouillon to make it taste really good. I never add salt to this - the ham and the bouillon are salty enough. (If you haven't tried ham bouillon, you should. It is really good to have on hand for flavoring bean soups, vegetables, and all sorts of things).

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On the stove top, put the pot on medium heat and bring the beans to a nice simmer. Peel and cut the potatoes, and add them to the pot. Put the biscuits or rolls in the oven. The beans, potatoes, and biscuits should be done at the same time, but if the biscuits are done first, take them out of the oven and cover them with foil or a clean dish towel to keep them hot.

While everything is finishing, drain the marinade off the veggies and put them in a nice serving bowl. In such a short time, they will have a nice pickly taste, but still have their own fresh taste, and be nice and crunchy.

Servings:6 with leftovers
Prep Time:45 Minutes
Cooking Time:2 - 2 1/2 Hours

Source: Vicy, my Mom

By Free2B from North Royalton, OH

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September 30, 20110 found this helpful

I would add cauliflower to my pickled veggies and I'd want my green beans cooked to being very tender (Southern way) other than that, I wouldn't change a single thing. Sounds like a great meal Barb. Cornbread would be good, but biscuits of dinner rolls will work for me too.

If we keep on, I'll have enough ideas to build a complete week's worth of menus for next week. They are already making me hungry too.

Thanks for all your wonderful recipes and ideas.

Pookarina

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October 1, 20110 found this helpful

My Mother made this meal many times for my brothers and me growing up. I am 63 year old and I made this meal for my family. You can also use canned green beans thru the winter. When buying a ham, I always get one with the bone in, because I use the bone to make broth.

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My girlfriend would never use the bone from her hams so she would give it to me and it was like getting a piece of gold, because I could make really good meals from the broth.

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