Split Pea Soup recipes?
I just made the Cooks Illustrated split pea soup--a lot more work than most split pea soup recipes and I'm not sure it's worth the effort. But, what I really liked is that you make a mirepoix and add it in. The pan I cooked it in was messy from it so I deglazed it with vinegar just to clean it off. CI recommended serving the split pea soup w/ balsamic vinegar but I decided to use the vinegar w/ the cooked on mirepoix and it was so good! I've been eating that and the no knead bread for a couple of days now.
I've always loved a variation of the old Magic Pan's Potage St.Germaine's recipe(6 servings):
1 1-lb meaty ham bone
5 cups homemade or low sodium chicken broth
1 lb dried split peas, rinsed and soaked according to package directions
2/3 cup shallots or vidalia onion, finely chopped
1/3 cup carrots, finely chopped
1/3 cup celery, finely chopped
Freshly ground pepper
4-6 bay leaves (my pref)
Large pinch of cumin (my pref)
3 cups light cream(or 2 cups whole milk, 1 cup heavy cream)
3/4 cup finely chopped ham (from bone)
Jigger of dry sherry (optional)
Sour cream (large dollop on top of ea. serving)
Place the ham bone in a large pot (8-12 quarts)& bay leaves(to taste). Add the chicken broth and peas. Bring to a boil, reduce the heat & simmer, stirring occasionally, for 30 minutes. Add the vegetables & seasoning and continue to simmer gently for 30-45 minutes or until the peas are very soft and the mixture is thick. Remove the ham bone. Gradually stir in milk and cream. Add the chopped ham (cut from bone) and simmer, stirring occasionally, for 10 minutes. Adjust seasoning as necessary. Stir in warmed sherry & place dollop of sour cream at end in each bowl. Serve immediately
When I worked in Nicola restaurant in Los Angeles about 10 years ago, Smiley the sous chef made a killer split pea soup. He used a chicken stock base and cooked the split peas along with diced onion, garlic, celery and carrot, added cumin, bay leaves, a bit of cloves, I think, and let it all cook down for about an hour until the peas were soft. About 20 minutes before it was finished he would add more diced carrot, celery and onion, so that the finished product had some recognizable (but cooked) bits of vegetable. He may have pureed the soup a bit with the handheld blender before adding the last veggies; I'm not sure. (And this is even better if you have a leftover ham bone or a ham hock to add at the beginning.) I never liked spit pea soup until I had Smiley's version, but now I crave it.
Mine is pretty basic, but it turns out well.
1 lb sliced bacon, cut into 1" lengths
1 lb cooking onions, halved and sliced
1 16oz pkge yellow dried split peas
12 cups water (approx)
1/2 tsp cayenne
In a large pot, render the bacon over a med-high heat, cooking until the individual piece start to become cripsy. Add sliced onions and cook until wilted, mixing well. Add peas and saute briefly, mixing all ingredients well. Add 12 cups cold water, cayenne and s&p.
Bring to a boil, then reduce to simmer. Cook until peas break down. Skim off any scum that appears while cooking. Stir frequently to avoid clumping. Add more water as required if it becomes too thick. Final consistency should be like watery porridge. Adjust seasoning to taste.
This is nice served with toasted flat bread.