YaYa’s Instant Pot Smoked Ham Hock Stock

What a marvelous resource soup is for the thrifty cook – it solves the ham-bone and lamb-bone problems, the everlasting Thanksgiving turkey, the extra vegetables. Julia Child

So why do I do this?  Because we love soup is why especially pasta fagioli, lentil, split pea, etc. soups and the particular huge ham hocks that we got are so heavily smoked that they just might ruin an otherwise wonderful pot of soup, just too strong.  At this time I am using absolutely everything in the vegetable bin before ordering one thing to refill it a great option for the stock of course, the more the merrier in the pot… 

No much effort to do the stock since all the veggies that I used were trimmed, washed, chunked up and tossed into the pot along with the huge ham hock while I went on a “treasure” herb hunt, coming away with parsley in the fridge, bay leaves from the spice rack as well as cloves and peppercorn melangé, oh, and there was 1/2 of a chicken stock pod in the fridge all into the pot.  Add water to the max fill line, turned the IP to 25 minutes, close the valve.  When the stock is finished, allow it to naturally release.  I strained all of the spent vegetable solids out of the pot and shredded all of the fatless meat chunks and then packaged up 1-quart containers for the freezer for future soup adventures.  Yes, the smokey stock is mellowed out quite a bit, package in quart containers, and freeze.  Use in your soup recipes and enjoy a bit of smokey flavor…link below to a previous version using the ham hocks, for the soup, add as much ham stock as you like along with beef or chicken stock, toss in shredded ham from the previously prepared ham from the stock.

Vegetables on hand for the stock today:
2 leeks, large slices
a couple celery ribs, leaves and all
1 sweet onion cut into wedges
3 smashed cloves of garlic
2 carrots, cut into chunks
sprigs of parsley
sprigs of fresh thyme
3 shiitake dried mushrooms