This is one of my all time favorites and, I think, the easiest recipe ever! A fantastic winter dish that is equally enjoyed in any season. Ham, potatoes and cabbage... you just can't go wrong! You must start this dish in the morning. You can make the dish faster by using water and turning up the heat, but then you lose all the flavor.
- Cut cabbage head in half and pop out core.
- Clean potatoes, no need to peel, but do use a dish sponge scratchy side to scrub them really well--cut off any bad black spots. Cut in half.
- Place cabbage on bottom, then top with potatoes.
- Toss in one left over ham, bone and all (or just the few pounds of ham you've purchased for this recipe -- I can say that you almost cannot have too much ham! But, it's all got to fit in your pot! LOL!). You do not have to cut it up. I see so many recipes where they are cutting the meat off the bone in neat little cubes and adding them to the pot. That is craziness! Firstly, the bone has a LOT of flavor and secondly, why work when the steam causes it to fall off the bone? I like to just toss in the entire ham, with whatever is leftover from our meal. When the dish is ready it will literally just fall off the bone at the time of serving. That is the beauty of this dish -- easy peasy!
- It's ok to just squeeze in all the ingredients the best you can. You will be cooking at extremely low heat for a very long time, it will all be fine.
- Salt and pepper to taste -- or do like I prefer to do and add nothing until it is plated. The ham is salty so it is very easy to over salt this dish. Be careful.
- A crock pot is perhaps the best way to make this meal the first time around, however I have made it on the stove top with the heat set to the lowest setting for the past 30 years. I like to use the stove because I have a pot far larger than the crock. It's up to you. If using a crock pot, use the medium setting all day long (depending -- if you have a crappy crock, you may need to set it on high -- you know what you have). On stove, cook at lowest possible setting all day. This is the perfect meal to set up before going to work -- when you get home dinner is ready!
- I just want to make a point of saying that NO water is required. You may have a hard time believing this. My mother certainly does and has ruined many pots as she will dump a tall glass (or 2) of water in when I'm not looking. Unfortunately you then wind up with a pot of water with ham, cabbage and potatoes swimming around begging to be rescued--and you lose a ton of flavor. DO NOT ADD WATER. Please trust me. There will be plenty of juice from the cabbage. So much so that you will most likely throw it out (though I like to use it as broth to pour over the dogs' dry food).
- So, quick recap -- just clean everything and squeeze it all into you pot or crock. For stove top, cook at lowest setting all day long, crock -- go for medium.
Thank you so much for this easy, so easy recipe!