Winter’s arrived, so here’s a nice hearty “belly-filling” soup to keep you warm!
Pea and Ham Soup.
1 Smoked ham hock.
1 medium onion, diced.
2 garlic cloves, sliced or diced.
2 sticks celery, with leaves, diced small.
2 small carrots, diced.
2 cups yellow split peas.
2 Chicken stock cubes.
1 tablespoon olive oil.
Soak the split peas in a bowl of warm water.
Heat the olive oil in a large saucepan and sauté the diced onion, celery and garlic until soft, then remove, let cool and puree until smooth.
Meanwhile, put the ham hock into a saucepan and cover with with water, bring to the boil and then simmer for about an hour. It is ready when the meat starts to fall off the bone. Remove from saucepan and while it cools, strain the cooking water into the large saucepan. Add the pureed mixture of onion, garlic and celery, chicken stock cubes and diced carrots.
Drain and rinse the split peas and add to the stock and bring to the boil, then simmer for a couple of hours until the peas are soft and the soup has thickened. (If too thick, just add extra water or chicken stock).
Remove all the meat from the ham hock bone and chop into bite size pieces. (Not always possible, it usually just falls apart!), add to the soup. Season with pepper to taste.
Serve with a crusty loaf or roll.
This soup will keep for a few days (although not in our house – it’s always gone by the next day!) it just might need diluting a bit when reheating as it tends to thicken quite a lot.