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Image Credit: Christine
Split Pea Soup with Ham
“I love Split Pea soup. To me, it’s just one of those cozy, winter meals that epitomize comfort food. Yes, the color is less than desirable, but it sure does taste good. Whenever we have ham, I always freeze the bone to use with a pot of pea soup.” Christine
1 tablespoon olive oil
1 medium onion, chopped
4 carrots, peeled and thinly sliced
3 celery stalks, thinly sliced
2 tablespoons fresh thyme leaves (or 1 tablespoon dried)
Salt and pepper, to taste
1 can (14.5 ounces) reduced fat chicken broth
1 bag (16 ounces) green split peas, rinsed and picked through
Ham bone or 1-2 ham hocks
5 cups water
2 cups ham, chopped into ½ inch pieces
2 tablespoon butter
4 slices whole wheat sandwich bread, crusts removed, and cut into ½ inch cubes
1-2 tablespoons lemon juice (optional)
In a Dutch oven or 5-quart heavy pot with a lid, heat the oil over medium heat.
Add the chopped onion, carrots, celery, and thyme.
Season well with salt and pepper.
Cook until the veggies are soft, about 5-8 minutes.
Add the chicken broth, split peas, ham bone, and 5 cups water.
Bring the mixture to a boil, reduce the heat to medium-low, and partially cover; simmer until the
peas are soft, about 30-45 minutes.
As the soup is cooking, make the croutons.
Melt the butter in a large skillet over medium heat.
Add the bread cubes and cook, tossing occasionally, until the bread is browned and crisp,
about 6-8 minutes.
Transfer to a paper towel lined plate until ready to serve.
Once the peas are soft, remove and discard the ham bone.
Transfer half of the soup to a blender and puree.
You may have to do this in batches.
Don’t overfill your blender!
Return the puree to the pot and stir.
Add the chopped ham and simmer until heated through.
If necessary, thin with water.
Add salt, pepper, and lemon juice if desired.
Serve, topped with the buttery croutons.
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