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Split pea soup

Split pea soup
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  • Split pea soup

    Post #1 - January 6th, 2006, 11:27 am
    Post #1 - January 6th, 2006, 11:27 am Post #1 - January 6th, 2006, 11:27 am
    I know that it's a love it or hate it soup, but I fall into the love it camp.
    I got a hunk of ham with bone from my mom...
    Image

    Threw it into the freezer while we took our trip...
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    Chopped some carrots and onions...
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    Of course, the split peas...
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    Cooked the carrots and onions in bacon fat...
    Image

    Since I did cook bacon, and Barry worked from home, he got a BLT out of it...
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    Added a couple of bay leaves, half a bottle of beer and water to cover...
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    At this point, I went with Barry on what I believed to be a 45 minute errand. I put a lid on the pot and lowered the flame.

    Six hours later, we returned with a new car! How did that happen!?!
    Of course, I ran straight to the stove...the soup was very watery. I turned the heat up to try and thicken it but while happy about the new car, I feared the soup was ruined... :(

    Muttering to myself while looking through various cabinets, I spied some pearl barley. Tossed some in the pot, covered it and voila!
    Image

    Except for the six hour detour, a relatively easy soup!
    Authorized time shifting let the genie out of the bottle....
  • Post #2 - January 6th, 2006, 12:10 pm
    Post #2 - January 6th, 2006, 12:10 pm Post #2 - January 6th, 2006, 12:10 pm
    Looks delicious. I am in the love it group. No blending?

    Adding beer is a new one for me, it will be in the next batch.

    I usually add a few whole or chunked potatoes. They get blended along with a few scoops of peas (Mom used to blend it all for a smoother soup and add back the shredded ham after blending).

    Mint and peas is a classic combination...I have never tried it in soup, but I think it is worth a go.

    pd

    p.s., I ruined a stock and a nice pan a few months ago when my errand was detoured...and no new car to show for it :cry:
    Unchain your lunch money!
  • Post #3 - January 6th, 2006, 12:23 pm
    Post #3 - January 6th, 2006, 12:23 pm Post #3 - January 6th, 2006, 12:23 pm
    I don't blend. I like the chunkier texture. I go back and forth with the potatoes though. Sometimes I toss in a fine dice but I didn't have any on hand. I did like the barley though, and will probably try it again.
    Authorized time shifting let the genie out of the bottle....
  • Post #4 - January 6th, 2006, 2:54 pm
    Post #4 - January 6th, 2006, 2:54 pm Post #4 - January 6th, 2006, 2:54 pm
    Personally, I never blend ... I like a much thicker soup generally seasoned with only black pepper and the Ham hocks/shanks/uncured ham/smoked neck bones. Commercial soups also seem so thin and watery.

    Also, I like to render the ham in the pan prior to cooking off the vegetables.
  • Post #5 - January 6th, 2006, 3:26 pm
    Post #5 - January 6th, 2006, 3:26 pm Post #5 - January 6th, 2006, 3:26 pm
    Delk,

    Nice looking soup,

    I also made split pea soup over the holidays. I will almost always use celery, leek, and often turnip/parsnip in addition to the onion/carrot for more depth of flavor.

    I didn't blend this time, although once in a while (for a more formal dinner) I will, before straining and then further refining with heavy cream and whole butter. :D And then topping the finishedd soup with crispy buttered garlic pumpernickle croutons. :wink:

    :wink: I also like to make it once in a while with a few pieces of beef knuckle bone or short rib for a change of pace.

    Never tried the beer.

    Thanks for sharing.

    :twisted:
  • Post #6 - January 6th, 2006, 5:26 pm
    Post #6 - January 6th, 2006, 5:26 pm Post #6 - January 6th, 2006, 5:26 pm
    Hey, that's the second food pic today featuring fresh bay leaves (the lasagna sauce had me thinking picadillo because of it).

    Maybe I'm just used to the old dried out stuff (I do get leaves from Laurels in FL and CA from the Cuban in-laws, but they dry them out before using), but I don't find that the fresh ones impart enough flavor.

    Fresh bay leaf lovers, talk to me.

    PS, my country ham none went into a potaje de garbanzos. Damn, that's a fine pea soup.

    PPS, your pea soup looks truly fantastic.
  • Post #7 - January 6th, 2006, 5:40 pm
    Post #7 - January 6th, 2006, 5:40 pm Post #7 - January 6th, 2006, 5:40 pm
    I bought my second Bay tree at the Hyde Park plant sale last spring. It is not supposed to be subjected to freezing temps...I keep it on my enclosed but unheated backporch. Last year's did not survive, though it may have been due to neglect.

    I assume drying leaves, like anything else, concentrates the flavors and oils near the surface. When I use the fresh leaves I bruise them fairly harshly, twist and crumple or run the tines of a fork across each side to expose more surface area. That said, there may also be other chemical changes that occur in the drying process that effect the flavor, e.g., think curing of tobacco or patcholi.

    pd
    Unchain your lunch money!
  • Post #8 - January 6th, 2006, 8:24 pm
    Post #8 - January 6th, 2006, 8:24 pm Post #8 - January 6th, 2006, 8:24 pm
    Lovely looking soup, ummmm, ummmm, good! The barley is an inspiration, must try.

    Made some pea soup here last Monday, an Italian version printed on the back of my Canadian *whole* pea package. I'd never seen whole dried peas, but they're standard here in Montreal. Used some good local bacon, carrots, onions, bit of celery, and hand chopped some whole canned tomatoes. Added a cup of the wine, as called for. The soup was thin by our Midwestern standards, but has a certain charm of its own. The whole peas tend to stay integral, which lends a different texture to the concoction.

    I think I'd prefer yours, tho'!! :)

    Geo
    Sooo, you like wine and are looking for something good to read? Maybe *this* will do the trick! :)
  • Post #9 - January 6th, 2006, 9:42 pm
    Post #9 - January 6th, 2006, 9:42 pm Post #9 - January 6th, 2006, 9:42 pm
    We have had a bay tree for several years now. It winters in a south-facing sun room and summers on a concrete patio. Fresh (picked less than 10 minutes before use) leaves have a rounder flavor than dried leaves. Flavor components are lost in the drying process. Strong sun is needed to develop the best flavor, so the leaves are better in August than in February. Even then I wouldn't go back to using dried bay leaves.
  • Post #10 - January 6th, 2006, 10:37 pm
    Post #10 - January 6th, 2006, 10:37 pm Post #10 - January 6th, 2006, 10:37 pm
    One can get usually obtain whole yellow peas at Wikstrom's locally, and pobably at Erickson's on the other side of Clark St, as well. I prefer split yellow peas, as they cook much faster, but otherwise make my soup in the Swedish manner, meaning that I use a ham hock and the carrots and onions, but also marjoram, ginger, and a pinch of allspice to season it, in addition to S&P and the bay leaves. A little thyme is very nice, too. I start mine on the stove, and then bake it in a Dutch oven for a long, long time. It always gets blended, though not enough to make it perfectly smooth. The stick blender is the soup-o-phile's best friend.

    Gott Nytt Ar! 8)
  • Post #11 - January 9th, 2006, 5:30 pm
    Post #11 - January 9th, 2006, 5:30 pm Post #11 - January 9th, 2006, 5:30 pm
    We also use yellow split peas. We add the juice of half a lemon and about a tablespoon of freshly ground cumin.
  • Post #12 - January 13th, 2006, 7:38 pm
    Post #12 - January 13th, 2006, 7:38 pm Post #12 - January 13th, 2006, 7:38 pm
    Your soup looks lovely, and that ham <kisses fingertips.> I had some turkey necks in the freezer leftover from Thanksgiving, so I used those instead of ham the last time I made pea soup. A little thyme, a little cayenne, onion, carrot...really good.
  • Post #13 - January 14th, 2006, 12:59 am
    Post #13 - January 14th, 2006, 12:59 am Post #13 - January 14th, 2006, 12:59 am
    What sort of beer did you use in the soup? I make split pea on a regular basis and never thought of adding beer to it. I'd like to try it with my next go at it.
  • Post #14 - January 14th, 2006, 2:24 am
    Post #14 - January 14th, 2006, 2:24 am Post #14 - January 14th, 2006, 2:24 am
    Goose Island Honkers Ale
    Authorized time shifting let the genie out of the bottle....
  • Post #15 - December 17th, 2008, 11:39 am
    Post #15 - December 17th, 2008, 11:39 am Post #15 - December 17th, 2008, 11:39 am
    Water or stock? What are the pros and cons of each?

    I'm chomping at the bit to use my Wettstein smoked pork jowl as the base for a great soup.

    Jonah
  • Post #16 - December 17th, 2008, 11:50 am
    Post #16 - December 17th, 2008, 11:50 am Post #16 - December 17th, 2008, 11:50 am
    You can go either way. I think that most classic recipes will use water, but stock will work just fine too.

    There are no "pros" or "cons", it's just a function of flavor. If you have ultra-precise senses buds, you may notice more body in the soup if you use good, homemade stock. For me, the thick peas will mask any of that.

    For my money, I always use water and my split pea soup is great. Homemade stock is something I'm relatively tight with, so I'm not going to use up a big pot of it unless I really need to.

    (Please note that I mentioned "homemade" stock. When it comes to soups, I subscribe to the Ruhlman rule: homemade stock or water, never canned).

    Best,
    Michael
  • Post #17 - December 17th, 2008, 12:27 pm
    Post #17 - December 17th, 2008, 12:27 pm Post #17 - December 17th, 2008, 12:27 pm
    Since the difference, as you suggest is very minor, I'll probably go with water. I used to use stock pretty routinely for all soups (I assumed extra richness was always a plus), but lately I've been using water. I get a great feeling of satisfaction out of taking something completely tasteless (and free) and making it hearty and flavorful.

    Thanks,
    Jonah
  • Post #18 - December 17th, 2008, 1:11 pm
    Post #18 - December 17th, 2008, 1:11 pm Post #18 - December 17th, 2008, 1:11 pm
    The last time I made pea soup, I was in a real hurry. No additional vegetables other than the peas and thick chunks of country ham from Nashville. You can't do much better with a food prep that takes about three minutes.
  • Post #19 - December 17th, 2008, 1:27 pm
    Post #19 - December 17th, 2008, 1:27 pm Post #19 - December 17th, 2008, 1:27 pm
    Jonah wrote:I get a great feeling of satisfaction out of taking something completely tasteless (and free) and making it hearty and flavorful.


    Me too. One of the nice things about winter is a satisfying, thick soup dinner that cost less than pocket change to make.
  • Post #20 - December 17th, 2008, 2:55 pm
    Post #20 - December 17th, 2008, 2:55 pm Post #20 - December 17th, 2008, 2:55 pm
    I use a pound each of green and yellow peas, onions, carrots, water, and a couple of big tablespoons of chicken base. After two, three hours, hit it with the stick blender 'til I'm tired of playing, then some chopped Joe and Frank's smoked Polish. Hard to imagine anything better for a winter supper.
  • Post #21 - December 17th, 2008, 4:29 pm
    Post #21 - December 17th, 2008, 4:29 pm Post #21 - December 17th, 2008, 4:29 pm
    I always add some vinegar at the end, gives a great flavor. I notice that Split pea soup often comes with croutons rather than crackers. I always hand make my own croutons, using some butter and olive oil in a saucepan, adding the chopped up pieces of old bread and garlic and herbs de provence. Then I put in the oven. Delectable. I am craving some pea soup right now!
  • Post #22 - December 17th, 2008, 5:19 pm
    Post #22 - December 17th, 2008, 5:19 pm Post #22 - December 17th, 2008, 5:19 pm
    Well, ok, enough's enough. After watching y'awl talk about pea soup all day, and shivering a bit from the chill and snow outside, I took the leftovers, bones, etc. from this, and whipped up a nice pea soup, using some onion and carrot chunks as additions.

    Yum, tastes good on this cold evening. Tnx for the motivation!

    Geo
    Sooo, you like wine and are looking for something good to read? Maybe *this* will do the trick! :)
  • Post #23 - December 18th, 2008, 10:01 am
    Post #23 - December 18th, 2008, 10:01 am Post #23 - December 18th, 2008, 10:01 am
    I LOVE SPLIT PEA SOUP.


    I usually fry up three or four vats of split pea per year. On a whim (although an educated one*) last year, I set a decent amount aside from one vat. I heated up some of my Indian spices in hot oil - a garam masala, some aleppo pepper, cilantro chutney - you get the drift if you dabble in Indian cookery. Added it to the soup. This will be done to some of each vat forever now. Absosmurfly delicious. Reminds me, I have some of that batch in the freezer still. :P

    *well cooked beans and spices are on every Indian menu.
    We cannot be friends if you do not know the difference between Mayo and Miracle Whip.
  • Post #24 - December 18th, 2008, 11:03 pm
    Post #24 - December 18th, 2008, 11:03 pm Post #24 - December 18th, 2008, 11:03 pm
    This thread has convinced me to cook up some split pea soup this weekend.

    Is the ham basically adding smokiness? I wonder if other smokey products would do. I haven't had a lot of ham in my time. What should I look for in a good quality ham for soup-making?
  • Post #25 - December 18th, 2008, 11:26 pm
    Post #25 - December 18th, 2008, 11:26 pm Post #25 - December 18th, 2008, 11:26 pm
    Smoked turkey parts (necks, butts, wings, legs) are also an option and readily avail in just about every grocery store. For ham parts, I usually go with smoked hocks and neckbones (cheap parts) but then for the final chunks, I'll use a more meaty piece to bulk up the meat content. Hocks and necks do have a decent amt of meat, but ya gotta work for it. I will normally shred up the meat from the hocks, but save the neckbones for myself as a savage, gnawing treat. Yeah, I'm a tad on the ghetto side, but the meat is ALWAYS better closest to the bone.
    We cannot be friends if you do not know the difference between Mayo and Miracle Whip.
  • Post #26 - December 19th, 2008, 2:42 pm
    Post #26 - December 19th, 2008, 2:42 pm Post #26 - December 19th, 2008, 2:42 pm
    Can I be in the "love it" group while preferring it without the ham?

    I like vegetarian split pea soup, a lot!
    Hillary
    http://chewonthatblog.com <--A Chicago Food Blog!
  • Post #27 - December 19th, 2008, 9:40 pm
    Post #27 - December 19th, 2008, 9:40 pm Post #27 - December 19th, 2008, 9:40 pm
    Dear Chew:

    A good way to add a nice natural smoky taste to pea (or any dried bean) soup is to chuck a dried chilpotle chile into the pot. I first did this with black bean soup, and found the smoke flavor permeated but did not overpower the soup, and added negligible heat, surprisingly. Just make the soup in your usual manner, but do remember to remove the chile before pureeing the soup.
  • Post #28 - December 20th, 2008, 2:16 am
    Post #28 - December 20th, 2008, 2:16 am Post #28 - December 20th, 2008, 2:16 am
    Those photos really do inspire love (and does every ham bone have to go to red beans and rice? My freezer's already got a big red bean backlog), even though my childhood memories of split pea soup have kept me in the hate-gag-hate-it camp for decades. I can't remember why.

    Now I'm inspired to follow the advice in this thread and make a big batch of split pea soup.

    But, sigh, even as I type that, I know I'll be adding split pea soup to the list of Things That The Dog Will Eat With Me That My Husband Won't.
    Last edited by Katie on April 27th, 2020, 9:05 pm, edited 1 time in total.
    "Your swimming suit matches your eyes, you hold your nose before diving, loving you has made me bananas!"
  • Post #29 - December 30th, 2008, 11:07 am
    Post #29 - December 30th, 2008, 11:07 am Post #29 - December 30th, 2008, 11:07 am
    I made two batches of split pea soup over the weekend, and a strange thing happened. The first batch came out as split pea mush (not that that's a bad thing), but in the second batch, the peas did not break down much at all. I did both batches in a crock pot for 8+ hours on low. I threw in a variety of things (onions, carrots, spices), and can't remember what I put in the first batch but not the second, or in the second but not the first, that caused the marked difference in pea texture. All I can remember is I might have added a little wine or sherry to the first batch but not the second. Nothing tomatoey in either, I'm sure of that. Any ideas?
    "Your swimming suit matches your eyes, you hold your nose before diving, loving you has made me bananas!"
  • Post #30 - December 30th, 2008, 12:05 pm
    Post #30 - December 30th, 2008, 12:05 pm Post #30 - December 30th, 2008, 12:05 pm
    funholidaygirl:

    I gave my soup a shot of balsamic at the end, and I thought it added some nice depth to the flavor.

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