Tonight we had a wonderful soup that I picked out of the December 2013 issue of Cooking Light. Creamy White Bean Soup with Smoked Ham Hocks. I love cannelini beans so this recipe was calling my name from the moment that I saw it! Since it was made in the slow cooker, it was even easier to make! Paula prepped everything on Wednesday when she was just hanging out at home.
Start by heating a skillet over medium-high heat. Add 2 tablespoons of olive oil to the pan and swirl to coat. Add 1 1/2 cups of chopped onion, 1 cup diced celery, 1 cup diced carrot and 1 tablespoon chopped thyme to the pot and cook 10 minutes or until vegetables are tender. Scrape onion mixture into a 6-quart electric slow cooker. Add 2 smoked ham hocks, 1 pound cannelini (or Great Northern) beans, and 6 1/2 cups of chicken stock. Cover and cook on LOW for 8 hours or overnight.
When the soup is done, remove the ham hocks from pan and cool slightly. Remove any meat from bones but discard fat, skin, and bones. Chop meat; stir into beans. Cook for another 10 minutes to allow flavors to meld. Sprinkle with chives – if available – and black pepper.