Meals and Courses

  • 150 g (5 oz) dried chickpeas, soaked for 48 hours in cold water or 12 hours in boiling water
  • 500–750 g (1–1½ lb) boneless smoked bacon hock joint
  • 1 onion, studded with 4 cloves
  • 2 garlic cloves, crushed
  • 1 bay leaf
  • sprig of thyme
  • sprig of marjoram
  • sprig of flat leaf parsley
  • 1.8 litres (3 pints) water
  • 1.8 litres (3 pints) chicken stock
  • 300–375 g (10–12 oz) potatoes, cut into 1 cm (½ inch) cubes
  • 300 g (10 oz) Savoy cabbage, shredded
  • salt and pepper

Drain the chickpeas, rinse under cold running water and drain again. Put the bacon joint in a large, deep saucepan and cover with cold water. Bring the water briefly to the boil, then drain, discarding the water.

Transfer the bacon joint to a clean, large heavy-based saucepan. Add the chickpeas, studded onion, garlic, bay leaf, thyme, marjoram, parsley and measurement water. Bring to the boil, then reduce the heat, partially cover and simmer for 1½ hours until the meat is tender.

Remove and discard the onion and herbs. Remove the hock, transfer to a board and cut into small pieces. Set aside. Add the stock, potatoes and cabbage to the pan, and simmer for a further 30 minutes.

Add the reserved hock pieces to the soup and cook for a further 10 minutes. Season with salt and pepper. Ladle the soup into warm soup bowls and serve with fresh, crusty bread.

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