Ham, Cabbage, and Pierogi Soup

March 12, 2018 by Nicole Collins

Sometimes, there’s just nothing better than a big old bowl of soup.

It’s funny, because I never used to be a soup eater. I never used to be a hot tea drinker either. I guess it’s something about hot liquids that just didn’t do it for me.

Unless it was Cream of Crab Soup. I’m always a Cream of Crab Soup eater.

Plus, I also kinda thought soup was too much work. You have to carefully maneuver the soup’s contents on to the spoon so that you’re not just drinking air. You have to go back in a million times to be able to finish eating/drinking your soup. And, for someone with shaky, unsteady hands, it can be a little messy.

No need to ask how I know that.

But, the reasons I used to hate soup are now the reasons that I love it. I got to buy cool soup spoons so that I can have an efficient and fulfilling dip in to the soup. I get to slow down my meal by carefully savoring each ladle. Now, I love soup!

So today, I’m giving you a twist on one of my childhood favorites and turning it in to soup!

Today, we’re having Ham, Cabbage, and Pierogi Soup.

Can I get an mmmmmm, real quick?

Growing up, my mom had a few staple meals that she would home make; and Ham and Cabbage was one of them. It was a really simple, one pot dish. Throw cooked ham, quartered cabbage, and halved russet potatoes in a pot of water, and boil. It’s kinda like a corned beef and cabbage’s first cousin, without all of the spices. But, I loved it! I’d douse it up with butter, and go to town. I still request it every now and then.

Today, we’re using the same concept, but adding some special flavors and ingredients to make soup.

We start with a ham bone. Every year for Christmas and Easter, my mom and I have a glazed ham. And, I always take home the ham bone. I store it in the freezer until I can figure out what to do with it. And this Christmas’ ham bone became the star of this soup!

The ham bones simmers low and slow in a bath of chicken stock, water, onion, celery, garlic, and paprika to impart TONS of flavor in to our soup base. Once the ham bone has done its job, we remove it from the pot and shred off any leftover bits of ham that we didn’t get when we initially carved it. I got about a cup of ham pieces off of my ham bone.

While the liquid is still simmering, we add some chopped cabbage to the soup. We leave it in there just long enough to soften up before we add our final star.

Pierogis!

Now, I cheated on this one. I did not make my own pierogis from scratch. Though, I should play around and figure out how to do that. I used some store bought, frozen cheddar and potato pierogis. And, they were perfect! They add the potato aspect that I’m used to from my childhood meal, plus they help make the soup more hearty and filling. And, of course, we need to talk about how absolutely delicious they are swimming around in that meaty broth.

This soup has all of the best elements: savory broth, creamy pierogis, fresh light veggies. The ham flavor really shines in the soup, and it just makes you feel so warm and fuzzy inside.

And comforted. Just like mama makes you feel.

Plus, it stores really well in the freezer. 6 servings is too much at one time for me, so you can store the soup up until the part where you cook the cabbage. Cool it, and freeze it. When you’re ready for some more, thaw it out, bring it back up to a boil, and add your pierogis. Easy breezy!

I hope this soup warms your soul from the inside out like it does for me! There’s no such thing as a soup hater with a soup like this. You’re gonna love it!

Enjoy, and let’s eat!

Ham, Cabbage, and Pierogi Soup Serves: 6 Print

Ingredients:

  • 1 tbsp butter

  • 1 onion, diced

  • 2 stalks celery, diced

  • 2 cloves garlic, minced

  • ¼ tsp pepper

  • ¼ tsp paprika

  • 4 cups water

  • 4 cups chicken stock

  • 1 ham bone

  • 1 small head of cabbage, shredded

  • 18 frozen cheese pierogis

  • fresh chives, for garnish (optional)

Directions:

  1. In a dutch oven or large stock pot, melt butter over medium high heat. Add onion, celery, pepper, and paprika. Saute 3-5 mins, until softened. Add garlic and saute 1 min, until fragrant. Add ham bone, water, and chicken stock to the pot. Bring to a boil. Reduce heat to medium low, cover, and simmer for 1 hour.

  2. Remove the ham bone, and increase heat back to medium high. Add the shredded cabbage. Bring back to a boil, and boil for 10 mins. Meanwhile, pull off any additional meat from the ham bone. After 10 mins, add the frozen pierogis and ham to the pot. Boil for 5 mins. Remove from heat. Divide evenly between 6 bowls. Garnish with fresh chives, if desired.

Recipe notes:

*I was able to get about another cup of ham off of my ham bone. If you're bone is not that meaty, feel free to reserve 1 cup of ham to add to the soup.

*The broth of this soup freezes well. You can make this soup up until the point that you would add the pierogis. Cool and freeze. When you're ready to have the soup, thaw the broth. Bring it to a boil, then add the frozen pierogis and cook them according to their package directions.

*You could use 1 small head of cabbage or half of a larger head. We're going for a thick shred on the cabbage.

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