Wednesday, January 9, 2013

Real Split Pea Soup

After long search for real split pea soup . . .
Nothing like what I grew up with.
Something at least as good as the canned stuff.
Something approaching the ambrosial peppery split pea I had once 
at a restaurant, high in the Canadian Rockies, after a long cold hike

. . . I think I've finally found it.

[NOTE: To make frozen basil cubes (at their height in summer):  chop fresh basil,
pack in ice cube tray, fill with water just to barely cover.]
This recipe is loosely adapted from one for Hoppin' John, a black-eyed pea stew,
in Rick Rodgers' Christmas 101.

Ham bone (I used the one leftover from our Christmas Eve dinner, with still some meaty bits left on)  
2 medium onions 
3 medium celery ribs, with leaves, chopped
2 Tablespoons olive oil
2 garlic cloves, crushed and minced
2 teaspoons sweet Hungarian paprika
1 teaspoon dried basil (I used two cubes of frozen chopped basil)
1 teaspoon dried thyme (I used a couple of sprigs of fresh thyme from my winter garden)
plenty of freshly ground black pepper
a scant ⅛ teaspoon cayenne

1 lb. split peas, rinsed and drained

  1.  Place ham bone, 1 onion, and 1 celery rib in crock pot and add 3 quarts cold water on HIGH.
  2. Heat a large skillet over medium heat, add oil and the remaining onion and celery ribs.  Cook, stirring often, until softened, about 5 minutes.
  3. Add garlic and spices (except pepper) and stir until fragrant, about 30 seconds.
  4. Stir in split peas.
  5. Add to crockpot, set at HIGH, for 3-4 hours.  Cook until peas are soft and mush easily.
  6. Remove ham bone and when cooled enough to handle, chop any remaining meat and add back to soup.
  7. Blend or mash soup thoroughly.
  8. Salt and pepper to taste. 


Cait said...

This sounds delicious! Mine was different--no meat for one thing. I used the recipe in your "Not your Mother's slow cooker cookbook" but put in extra carrots. It was kind of a carrot and pea soup mix which I really liked.

Emma J said...

Okay. I'll have to try that one next. And I should try Grandma's recipe again. Maybe my tastebuds have grown up since I had it last.