Cooler weather has set in, and with it, the desire for more substantial, belly-warming meals. One of our favourite meals for late fall is a comfort food classic, ham with scalloped potatoes. Thing is, that’s a lot of leftovers when there are only two people eating it, so the question is, what to do with all that ham?
This chowder was designed to provide a different answer than the usual answers of sandwiches and split pea soup, and was published in my book Chowders and Soups (Nimbus). Although the recipe calls for mashed potatoes, you can substitute leftover scalloped potatoes in equal measure.
Potato & Ham Chowder
2 strips bacon
1 yellow onion, diced
2 stalks of celery, diced
1 medium carrot, diced
1 cup diced cooked ham
1 cup mashed potatoes
3 cups chicken or vegetable stock
1 /2 cup heavy cream
1 /2 teaspoon ground cloves
1/ 4 teaspoon black pepper
Cook bacon in a large, heavy bottomed pot over medium heat. When bacon begins to crisp, drain off the fat, reserving one teaspoon. Return the fat and bacon to the pot and add onions, celery and carrot. Cook over medium heat until vegetables are soft, stirring occasionally.
Add ham, mashed potatoes and chicken stock and stir until blended. Add cream, cloves and pepper, bring to simmer before serving.