Last week, Rose hired a jazz band for Lord Grantham’s surprise party, and unlike the house party where the kitchen staff were invited upstairs to hear the opera singer perform, this time they have to stay and listen at the bottom of the pantry stairs.
Nevertheless, one of my favorite lines of the night came from my favorite character, Mrs. Patmore.
Mrs. P: “They sound good from down here.”
Carson: “If you like that sort of thing.”
Mrs. P: “It makes you want to jig about though, doesn’t it?”
Carson: (horrified) “Certainly not!”
Clueless as Lady Rose is (really, she had no clue that 6 more mouths to feed, 6 more bedrooms to have ready, and 6 more fireplaces to light in said bedrooms, would be an imposition for Mrs. Hughes and her housekeeping staff), she’s keeping the Abbey jumping with her modern ways and tastes!
Mrs. Patmore, Daisy, and Ivy would be able to keep up their part to feed the extra downstairs guests by making this Vegetable Barley Soup with Ham (using the leftover ham bone from a previous meal) and stretching it with homemade bread and butter.
Mrs. Patmore is very resourceful so we know she must also have some homemade apple sauce “put by.”
Add some farmstead cheddar from the village and maybe some treacle sponge cake leftover from the birthday festivities, and those American musicians would have eaten very well after their gig!
Vegetable Barley Soup with Ham
- 3 Tbsp. olive oil
- 1 cup chopped yellow onion
- 1 cup sliced leeks (white parts only)
- 1/2 cup chopped shallots
- 1 1/2 T. chopped garlic
- 1 smoked ham bone (about 1 pound, chop some leftover meat from the bone and reserve to add to the soup)
- 6 cups chicken stock (I used homemade, watch the salt if your ham is salty)
- 1 bay leaf
- 1 14.5 ounce diced tomatoes in juice
- 1 cup chopped celery
- 1 cup chopped carrots
- 1 cup frozen corn (defrost by letting it sit out on counter while you prepare soup)
- 1/2 cup chopped ham from the bone
- 1/3 cup uncooked pearl barley
- 1 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce
- 1/2 teaspoon black pepper
- chopped parsley, for garnish
- Warm the olive oil in a Dutch oven or stockpot. Add the onion, leeks, shallot, celery, carrots and cook over medium low heat, covered, stirring occasionally, for about 10 minutes until softened.
- Add the garlic and cook for 3 minutes more, stirring frequently. (Don’t let the garlic brown, turn down the heat if you must.)
- Add the stock and the ham bone.
- Add the bay leaf.
- Bring the mixture to a boil, then lower the heat to a gentle simmer, and simmer for 1 hour.
- Add the 14.5 can of diced tomatoes and their juices.
- Cook over low heat for 10 minutes, then fish out the ham bone.
- Stir in the pearl barley, and simmer gently for 10 minutes, stirring occasionally.
- Add the 1/2 cup of chopped ham, the Worcestershire and black pepper.
- Cook 10 minutes more and add the corn (defrosted if frozen.)
- Taste to see if barley is soft, and add salt as needed.
- Garnish with fresh chopped parsley.