Yellow split pea soup recipe. Rib-sticking winter comfort food!
Homemade split pea soup...effortless winter cooking
Nothing satisfies more on a cold day than coming home to a rib-sticking split pea soup. For those unfortunates that have yet to try a real homemade split pea soup, please do not assume that the gloopy stuff passed off in cans is in any way reminiscent of the real thing, and although this recipe does require a number of hours of cooking time, the actual effort involved is truly negligible, and you can enjoy the simmering aroma all afternoon as you await dinner.
Cheap to make!
Although this tastes like a no-expense-spared kind of meal, making this soup costs next to nothing, and will provide enough leftovers to freeze for ample quantities of easy later weeknight suppers.
You can make this with either green or yellow split peas, but I prefer the yellow ones. You do want to use either some cured salt pork, or a meaty ham bone for flavoring the stock and peas, and for later garnishing the soup with shreds of the slow cooked ham. Do not use a fresh piece of ham, you need the pink cured stuff to get the taste right. If you choose to use salt pork (which is a perfectly acceptable substitute for those of you not blessed with an extra ham hock lying about) try to get a good and meaty piece, so as to have lots of meat for shredding and garnishing.
Yellow split pea soup (for a crowd)
- 2 lbs dried yellow split peas
- 4 liters (quarts) of water
- 1 lb of salt pork or a big old meaty ham bone
- 5 big onions, chopped
- ¼ cup of butter
- ½ tsp dried thyme
- 4 tsps salt (more to taste…depends a bit on the saltiness of the ham)
- 1 tsp freshly ground black pepper
Rinse the peas off in running water. Heat a big and heavy soup pot over medium, add butter, and sauté onions for about 8 minutes, or until well softened (not browned though!).
Add ham or salt pork, peas and water, and bring to a boil, skimming off froth for a few minutes. When the soup clears, reduce heat to a simmer, and add the remaining ingredients. Let simmer slowly for about 3 hours, or until the peas are very soft and the soup has thickened. Taste for additional seasoning.
Take out the pork and shred the meat. When serving, garnish the soup with strips of ham, and with minced chives or green onions if desired.
This makes enough for a generous three meals for a family of four. If that sounds overwhelming, the recipe can be halved…but it's so easy to make more, and this freezes so well (and it's so cheap!!!) so you might as well make a big batch!