Ham and potato (and what ever you want) soup
An amount of ham that will satisfy you (bacon or smoked hock can also be used)
Equal amount of potato
1/4 as much leek (optional)
Carrot - like 2 or 3 (optional)
Garlic - as much as you want
Herbs (optional but very tasty, thyme, sage, or parsley go best imo)
Stock, enough to cover everything and leave it floating, uhh... between 2 and 8 cups (I tend to use chicken bullion cubes, since they take up no space, don't go bad and are easily scalable when making soup and stew, but you could use any stock, or just water but you'll probably end up wanting to add an ungodly amount of salt if you do, you could also use left over Ramen flavor packets)
A little flour if you want a thicker soup (the potatoes, especially russets, do give the soup thickness as they cook, but flour can make an even more filling soup)
Milk (optional, to be used with the flour)
Dice up the ham/bacon into bite sized pieces. Not too small since they will get cooked a while, but not so big that they would be uncomfortable to eat.
Peel the carrot and potatoes (if not using russet potatoes you could leave the skin on for more vitamins and shit but it'll probably taste not as good. Russet potato skin has a lot of dirt flavor that I find too over powering. It also has an unpleasant texture. I do like using russets for this soup though because they get a nice creamy texture when cooked and take on a lot of the flavor from the broth. Russets crumble more though, so I would cut them bigger than gold or red potatoes. They also thicken the soup but themselves because of the starch)
Cut the carrot and potatoes into slightly bigger bite sized pieces. Too small and they will disintegrate during cooking, though you could also allow them to disintegrate on purpose.
Cut the leek into small pieces, and mince the garlic.
Fry the ham in a big pot, in a little bit of oil, until it starts to get a bit brown/crispy in the edges. If you are using bacon you don't need the oil, just start on a low temp and gradually increase it. If you are using bacon you'll probably want to drain some of the rendered fat.
Add the garlic and leeks and let it get some direct heat for 30 secs-1 min. You can give the leak more time if you want them milder and softer.
>>>if using flour and milk: turn the heat down to pretty low so you don't burn the flour. general proportion notes: one Table spoon of flour to one cup of liquid will make a pretty thick sauce, for soup its probably better to go for 1 spoon of flour to 3 cups of liquid. If making a 3 person serving you'll probably be using at least 6 cups of liquid, so I guess id start with ~2 table spoons.
Put the flour in and stir it around, let it cook a little bit. People say "until the raw flour smell dissapears" to this day I don't know what they are talking about and I have a pretty good nose. The smell will change a bit, and the appearance of the flour will change... it will take on more color and look sort of transparent. Throw in a bay leaf or two if you have em.
You can start to add liquid in like half cup intervals, in the form of milk or stock at this point, and increase the heat as you do. When you pour the first liquid in make sure to scrape at the bottom of the pot to get all of the delicious brown bits and stuck flour. If you're fancy, white wine adds some nice flavor if used to de-glaze the pot. Totally unnecessary though.
Once you've added about half your total liquid, you can add in the potatoes and carrots. (If you wanted to be real extra, you could roast the potatoes, carrots, leeks and what not befor throwing them in. It'll bring in more roasty flavor and require less boiling time, but probably more oil/salt and more time over all.)
You can add the rest of your liquid at this point. And if you have the ham bone thats really good to let simmer in the pot too! and just stir once and a while to make sure nothing sticks to the bottom of the pot. It's done when the potatoes are soft. Like... 30 min of simmering? Idk, it depends on the potatoes and how big you cut them. If you like harder or softer vegetables you can stop it when ever.
If your using herbs, throw em in about 5 minutes before you're going to serve. Also add extra salt if you think you need it. Most ham and store bought stock (especially bullion) will be salty enough. Its a good idea to taste as you go though
This recipe is good because it can be made in one big pot with minimal additional dishes. Its mostly just chopping. And is a very hearty soup. Its also easy to add or take things out. Apple can be a nice addition at the end. I don't like onions, but those can also be added especially in place of leeks, just cook em with the ham. The trickiest part is probably the flour, but its optional. It also keeps quite well and is arguably better the next day.
-If you are using bullion cubes you can pre-boil the water and pre make the bullion into stock. I am very lazy though, and tend to just pour water and cubes into to pot at the same time. I can also adjust the quantity of the liquid easier that way too.
Curry, with Japanese curry roux blocks
These are the top shit, I think they even sell these in some wide spread grocery stores now? I like mild Vermont Curry the best of the ones I've had because I am babby about spicy and it has the "meatiest" taste to me, but the others are fine.
Gonna list the quantities I use for 1 regular sized box, but it can be made bigger or smaller.
Pork, any kind is fine, but cuts with more fat are better, like tenderloin or butt roast. Chops can be used though. Chicken also is good. This can also be made with just vegetables. - About 1-2 pounds, cut into bite sized peices.
Onion - 1 medium sized one. Diced.
Potatoe - 2-4 depending on the size. Pealed and cut into bite sized peice
Carrot - 4-7 depending on the size. Pealed and cut into bite sized peices
Garlic - 4 cloves, minced
Ketchup or tomato paste
Canned tomatoes or pasta sauce
1 box of curry roux
Additional curry spice powder if you want.
Lightly salt the meat, and then fry it meat in a bit of oil until the outside has a bit of color. The salt helps the meat develop color. The less you can actually cook it the better, so its good to start it off pretty hot, so you can just kinda sear the outside. Take the meat out and put it on a plate to the side.
Turn the heat down to med.low and Fry the onion until transparent, scraping at the bottom of the pot. Add in the garlic and let it get cooked for about 30 seconds. Add in the ketchup or tomato paste and stir it in, let it cook a bit to concentrate or mellow the flavors.
Put the meat back in, followed by the vegetables.
Pour in the tomatoes or tomatoes sauce, then use the can to measure the remaining needed water.
Stir and let everything simmer until the vegetables are soft. Cut up the roux and peel and cut apple at this time (if using)
Once everything is cooked take the pot off the heat, and add in the apple and curry blocks. Stir until the curry blocks dissolve, and return to low heat to let it thicken as needed. Additional curry powder, salt, pepper, msg, and soy sauce can be added to taste at this time.
Serve with rice, noodles, pasta, or bread.
Additional notes: if you use pork chops or chicken breast it might be best to keep the meat separate until the vegetables are partly cooked because those cuts will become dry if cooked for too long.
Pretty much any vegetables can be added. I add summer squash or zucchini sometimes. I know people also like to add bell peppers or eggplant. They can probably be added later in the cooking process, since they will cook faster than the potatoes and carrots.
A good meal is left over curry with Ramen, turned into a soup.
similar to above, but does not require curry roux blocks, does require curry powder.
I recommend chicken for this one, thighs ideally. But pork would work too.
Any vegetables, i like summer squash/zucchini, carrots, potatoe, some onion, snap peas, green beans, anything and everything.
Ginger (optional but very good)
Chilli powder (if you want)
Can Coconut milk/cream (optional)
Peanut butter (i like the chunky kind best, but there is no reason smooth won't work)
Cut meat into bite sized peices. If you have bone-in skin-on chicken thighs and don't feel like de-boning you can just use em whole, you might have to let things cook a little longer, though the bones and skin do bring a nice flavor.
Peel and cut up your vegetables of choice. Summer squash and zucchini work well left in big chunks but simmered for about as long as everything else.
Lightly salt, and then fry the meat in your pot for a bit, until it gets color. If using skin-on chicken you might be able to get away with no additional oil, just place them skin side down and slowly increase the heat to let the fat render out.
Take the meat out and cook the onions on low heat, add the garlic and ginger after they turn transparent, and cook for 30 seconds or so.
Add curry powder, how much is up to personal taste and whats in your curry powder, but I like to add a lot. When I'm making a ~four serving batch I think I usually end up adding like... 2+ table spoons.. but you can also always add more so, you don't have to add that much. Stir the curry powder around, let it coat the stuff and kinda "wake up" from the heat.
Put your meat back in, followed by any long cooking vegetables. Stuff like snap peas and green beans can be held back. Probably peppers too, I have no idea. Pour in your coconut milk, if you're using coconut milk. I never do because I am allergic to coconut, so I sometimes add cream in later, but it can also be totally skipped.
Add enough stock/bullion water to let everything be floating.
Let everything simmer until the vegetables are getting soft.
Add in any additional quicker cooking vegetables.
(If you were using cream I'd add it here, usually just a splash.)
Add in the peanut butter. For a 4ish serving i probably end up using between a quarter cup and a 1/3 cup of PB... but you can put as much in as you want. I don't think you could really put too much in, and you can always add more spice to compensate. To make it easier to dissolve the PB, you can put it in a bowl and add some hot broth and mix it into a thinner consistency befor pouring it in. I usually don't find this nessecary, but if your PB is cold it might help.
Let everything simmer together for just a bit. Taste for seasoning, add more salt, pepper, chilli powder if you want, and more curry powder as desired.
Goes really good with rice or rice noodles.