January 31, 2000
Place the piece of smoked ham in a baking pan. Start with 1/2 a ham, either butt end or shank end, and bake in a 325-degree oven until the juices start to brown. Pour in 1/2 c. water and leave in the oven till the water is hot and the crust starts to loosen (we sometimes use 1/2 c. of left over coffee). Remove from the oven and let cool. In the meantime, soak the beans in water to cover overnight. When the ham has cooled, cut out the bone, and dice up about 2 c. of ham. Reserve for later. Toss the ham bone into the beans in the same water they soaked in, with the celery stalks, garlic, and about 1/2 of the onion quartered with skin on. Bring to a boil and simmer for 2 hours. Cool and refrigerate so the fat can be skimmed off. Strain out the bone and discard. Add the meat juices and the meat and vegetables and the mustard and bring back to a boil. Simmer, covered, until beans are tender--probably another 2 hours. Season to taste and serve. Makes 8 servings.
Trim flowers off broccoli, cut stems, peel and slice. In a 6-8 quart kettle, melt butter. Add curry powder and onion and stir for 5 minutes over medium heat. Add broth, potatoes, broccoli stems, and carrots. Simmer for 30 minutes. Add mixture to blender and purée. Return to kettle. Heat to boiling; add flowers and milk. Simmer 20 minutes. Add cheese and serve.
In a saucepan, combine the onion and ginger with 3 c. water. Bring to a boil, cover, and simmer 10 minutes. Discard the onion and ginger (or reserve them to add to another soup). Place the miso in a small bowl. Add 2-3 Tbsp. of the hot onion broth. With the back of a wooden spoon, cream the miso until completely blended with the liquid. Stir the miso mixture into the pot. Add the soy sauce and mushrooms. Heat 5 minutes, until the mushrooms are cooked, taking care not to let the liquid boil. Ladle the miso soup into bowls and garnish with some scallion. Serve immediately. Note: Add cubed tofu along with the mushrooms, if you like. Makes 2 servings.
Place the cranberries and cinnamon stick in large saucepan. Add water to level about 1/2 inch above the berries. Heat to a boil on medium heat and simmer until the cranberries are very tender and begin to fall apart. Remove cinnamon stick. Pour cranberry mixture into blender. Purée, slowly adding sugar to taste. Strain. Place cranberry mixture and evaporated milk in saucepan; reheat to just under a boil. To serve, top with a tablespoon of yogurt and a dash of nutmeg. Makes 4 servings.