Meant to give 4.5stars. it is a good base - like the ham bone addition. Just got back from our local farmer's market today with bunch of fresh leeks, just-out-of-the-earth potatoes and the season's dried black olives with a nutty flavor- less salt. Decided to make this soup base with them: melted butter/olive oil in pot, sea salt, cracked black pepper & 3 bay leaves, stir fry in the sliced onions, some brown sugar on top, then sliced leeks. Toss together. Add the ham bone & I always brown the ham bone with a splash of good quality Chinese rice wine - it lifts the taste of the ham. top the pot with spring water & put in 15-20 of the dried black olives - it helps to add a subtle salty flavor to the soup naturally. chop up the potatoes into bite size pieces & toss in together with 3-4 cloves of chopped up garlic. bring to the boil then simmer the soup lowest heat for 2-3 hours. this fuses the flavors together and bring out the natural "sweetness" of the veg & meat in the soup. Leave out any cream/milk. do not puree. the potatoes & leeks/onions softened into the soup, the bits of meat came off the ham bone and I served it hot as broth w/softened chunks of potato & leeks with bits of ham meat in it - enjoy!!
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Meant to give 4.5stars. it is a good base - like the ham bone addition. Just got back from our...