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Ham Fried Rice

My kids always eat fried rice and never complain about it. It comes together really quickly and easily for a fast weeknight dinner. And you can actually switch out the meat and vegetables to use the things you have on hand.

Fried rice can be made vegetarian without any meat. It can also be made including almost any kind of meat–fresh or preserved. Ham or shrimp are common, but chicken and beef are popular as well. Fried rice is traditionally made with leftover vegetables. It almost always includes onions, but can also include peas, mushrooms, carrots or many other vegetables.

I intentionally buy a ham larger than our family needs for one meal, so that I can use the leftovers for recipes like this.

I like to make fried rice using the leftover chunk of ham on the end of the ham bone that was not spiral sliced so I get nice cubes of ham. But you could use ham slices chopped up as well. (If you want to know what to do with the ham bone, check out this recipe!).

Slice ham into half inch cubes.

Slice 2-3 green onions into quarter inch slices. (Have you ever tried regrowing green onions from the root ends? It actually works pretty well.)

Set aside the green slices for garnish.

Crack four eggs into a bowl. Whisk eggs.

Add 2 tbs olive oil in the pan and 2tsp toasted sesame seed oil to wok or cast-iron skillet. Heat up until oil shimmers.

Add the ham and the onion to the skillet along with frozen peas and sauté those up for a minute. Next add the rice.

It’s best to use cooked and cooled rice. If it isn’t fully cooled down then fried rice will end up a little more gummy. But in a pinch you can still use it.

Then then I add a splash of soy sauce for a little salty flavor.

Finally, pour in the egg. Immediately start stirring the rice. The idea is to get every grain of rice coated with a little bit of egg. After stirring, let it sit for a minute to cook on the bottom and then stir it again.

When there is no more uncooked egg, remove from heat. Garnish with toasted sesame seeds and with some green onions.

Serve along with potstickers or just enjoy fried rice as a main dish itself. 

Ham Fried Rice

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Main Dish
Serves: 6
Prep Time: 40 Cooking Time: 20 Total Time: 1 hour

A delicious family-friendly recipe to use up extra ham.

Ingredients

  • 1 cup rice
  • 1 cup cubed ham
  • 2-3 green onions
  • 4 eggs
  • 2 Tbsp olive oil
  • 2 tsp toasted sesame oil

Instructions

1

Cook rice your preferred way. Fluff rice, allow to cool.

2

Slice ham into half inch cubes. Slice green onions into quarter inch slices. Set aside the green slices for garnish. Crack eggs into a bowl. Whisk eggs.

3

Add olive oil and toasted sesame seed oil into wok or cast iron skillet. Heat up until oil shimmers. Add the ham and the onion for the skillet along with frozen peas and sauté those up for a few minutes until the onions soften. Next add the rice. Then pour soy sauce over the rice, stir.

4

Finally, pour in the egg. Immediately start stirring the rice. After stirring, let it sit for a minute to cook on the bottom and then stir it again. When there is no more uncooked egg, remove from heat.

5

Garnish with toasted sesame seeds and with some green onions.

Notes

Serve along with potstickers or just enjoy fried rice as a main dish itself.

Main Dish/ Recipes/ Side Dish

Ham Bone Beans

At one point in my life I would have thrown away my ham bone.  I would have looked at the bone left over from a spiral sliced ham and I would have seen that there was still meat on it, but not really known how to best use that. 

As I’ve tried to gain more homesteading skills I’ve looked for ways to use more of  the animal than I would have in the past.  Because one day, this could be the ham bone from a pig I raised on my own homestead.   

I love this recipe for ham beans because it uses every last bit of goodness that the leftover ham bone has to offer.

Begin by rinsing and sorting 1 lb of pinto beans. You used to occasionally find small rocks mixed in with dried beans but I think the mechanical sorting process has gotten better so I rarely see that any more.

If you want to pre soak your beans the cooking will go faster, but it’s not necessary.  Add your ham bone to a 5 or 6 quart dutch oven then add in the beans. 

If you plan ahead when you cook the ham you can save any juices leftover in the roasting pan.  Adding these juices will make the flavor of the beans even better.  And any collagen and fat help the texture and mouthfeel of the beans to be silky smooth.  

Slice an onion into small pieces. Mince a clove of garlic. 

If you like spicy beans, dice one jalapeno.  This will cook for a long time and mellow the heat, so my kids are usually ok with it in this recipe.  

Add vegetables to the dutch oven.

Fill the dutch oven with water to cover the beans.  Start the dutch oven on a medium heat with the lid on and leave it to begin boiling.  Once it comes to a boil turn down the heat to a nice bubbling simmer.  

I’ll come back and check on the pot periodically and make sure that the beans are still covered with water.  My 5 quart dutch oven is a little small for this recipe, so I add water once or twice while the beans are cooking to keep the beans covered. 

After a few hours all the little ham pieces of cooked and separated from the hand bone so at this point you can remove the ham bone. 

Take out those pieces of ham and chop them into small chunks. This way when you mix it in there’s bits of ham all through the beans.  

Serve with some homemade cornbread on the side.

Tips

If you plan ahead when you cook the ham you can save any juices leftover in the roasting pan. Adding these juices to the cooking water will make the flavor of the beans even better. And any collagen and fat help the texture and mouthfeel of the beans to be silky smooth.

If you soak dry beans in water at room temperature for a few hours, up to overnight, you will reduce the cooking time needed. You can either drain off excess soaking water or use it to cook the beans in.

If you don’t have a leftover ham bone you can substitute a smoked ham hock. These are available in the meat department of most grocery stores.

Ham Beans

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Main Dish, Side Dish
Serves: 10
Prep Time: 15 minutes Cooking Time: 3 hours Total Time: 1 hour 15 minutes

Meaty and delicious use for the leftover spiral ham bone to get every last bit of goodness from it.

Ingredients

  • 1 leftover ham bone (or ham hock)
  • 1 lb dry pinto beans
  • 1 onion
  • 1 clove garlic
  • 1 jalapeño (optional)

Instructions

1

Rinse and sort 1 lb of pinto beans.

2

Add your ham bone to a 5 or 6 quart dutch oven then add in the beans. Add juices leftover from cooking ham (optional).

3

Dice an onion into small pieces. Mince a clove of garlic. Dice one jalapeño (optional). Add vegetables to dutch oven

4

Fill the dutch oven with water to cover the beans with two inches of water. Start the dutch oven on a medium heat with the lid on and leave it to begin boiling. Once it comes to a boil turn down the heat to a nice bubbling simmer.

5

Check on the beans periodically and make sure that the beans are still covered with water. Add water, if needed, to keep the beans covered.

6

After three hours all the little ham pieces of cooked and separated from the ham bone so at this point you can remove the bone. Take out those pieces of ham and chop them into small chunks. Return to pot and test the beans to see if they are soft all the way through the middle. Cook up to an hour more to soften the beans. Test flavor, add salt if needed.

7

Serve with homemade cornbread on the side.

Notes

If you want to pre soak your beans the cooking will go faster, but it's not necessary.