Tuesday, March 15, 2011

Recipe Win: Split Pea Soup

Spring is aaaalmoooost here.  

Ok, not quite that here.  No flowers yet, but the snow mountain outside my window is slowly shrinking into a snow hill.  It's a tease, though, because I don't want to wear my coat, but 45 degrees is still chilly.  And tomorrow it's supposed to rain, so 45 will feel pretty cold.

So... it's still soup weather.  I can live with that.  But, I better show you this soup before it's too late!

I actually made this a few times during the winter but I just couldn't seem to get it right.  Remember the Recipe Fail?

Recipe Win!

If you're like me, and need to force-feed yourself vegetables, then soup is a good way to get them in you quickly and painlessly.  And it's a great warm-up on a chilly, rainy day. Pea soup is perfect for these occasions.

Wait! Don't stop reading!

You might not consider yourself a fan of split pea soup, but I want you to ask yourself... have you ever really tried it?

Because it might surprise you.

I never thought I liked it until it was placed in front of me at one lovely little Italian restaurant in Binghamton.  I gave it a try, and it was delicious!  Mine isn't quite as amazing as that, but it's pretty yummy-- trust me.

Split Pea Soup

1 large carrot, chopped
1 large celery stalk, chopped
1/2 onion, chopped
3 (ish) garlic cloves, minced
1 white potato, chopped
1 cup dry split peas
2 bay leaves
2 bouillon cubes of your choice (I used chicken, but you could use veggie if you want to make this vegan)
lots of water

1. At the bottom of a large pot, drizzle a bit of oil and begin sauteing your onion, celery, carrot, and potato.  When they begin to soften, add the garlic.  Sprinkle with salt and pepper.
2. Add the peas and fill the pot to about 3/4 with water (6-8 cups).  Bring to a boil.  Throw in your bay leaves and bouillon.
3. Turn the heat down and simmer for a long time, 1-2 hours.  It may get really thick (you know the saying "thick as pea soup?") so add water when necessary, a cup at a time-- you can always add more, but you can't take it out! You'll know it's done with the peas get soft and break apart.
4. If you like it rustic, eat it just like this.  But I like a smoother texture, so I give it a whiz with my immersion blender, for a silkier soup.

Serve with a little cheese, croutons, or crunchy bread.  Yum!  A little goes a long way. For a soup, this one sticks with you, so it makes for a great lunch. (Fiber, anyone?)  AND it's all veggie, so it's super duper good for you.  It's cheap and easy, just takes a little waiting time, but well worth it in the end (and it's freezable!).

Now's the time to use up all of those wintery things in your cabinets and basement (like root veggies and dried beans) to make room for all the freshies coming our way! Yay!  Look out for asparagus and spinach, first to shoot up.

It was one of those March days when the sun shines hot 
and the wind blows cold:  when it is summer in the light, and winter in the shade.  

Charles Dickens

1 comment:

  1. Split pea soup is one of the few things I hated as a kid that I haven't gotten around to making in my adult life. This looks pretty easy, too. But... after today I am sort of hoping we're done with soup weather til fall.