Slow cooker ham hock minestrone
This take on the classic vegetable and pasta soup includes ham to make it extra tasty. And, because the slow cooker does most of the work, it is super easy.
Note: + 10 mins cooling time
- 1 tbs olive oil
- 1 brown onion, finely chopped
- 1 carrot, peeled, finely chopped
- 2 celery sticks, finely chopped
- 1 leek, pale section only, thinly sliced
- 2 garlic cloves, crushed
- 1 zucchini, finely chopped
- 1 large (about 1kg) ham hock
- 2 x 400g cans diced tomatoes
- 4 cups (1L) reduced-salt chicken stock
- ½ cup (110g) dried soup mix
- ½ cup (90g) macaroni
- Basil pesto, to serve
Heat the oil in a large frying pan over medium-high heat. Add onion, carrot, celery, leek and garlic. Cook, stirring, for 5 mins or until onion softens. Transfer to a slow cooker. Add zucchini, ham hock, tomato, stock and soup mix. Cover and cook for 4 hours on high (or 6 hours on low) or until ham is falling off the bone and soup mix is tender.
Use tongs to transfer the ham hock to a heatproof bowl. Set aside for 10 mins to cool slightly.
Use 2 forks to shred the ham, discarding the bone and rind. Return the ham to the soup. Season.
Add the pasta to the soup mixture. Cover and cook on high for 30 mins or until al dente. Divide the soup among serving bowls. Top with the pesto.