I am on a soup kick. It's true. I feel like soup is sort of an unsung hero. I've yet to make a soup that is difficult or ultra time consuming. Granted they simmer for quite a while, but actual prep time is little to none usually.
For most people, the words "split pea soup" will either make your mouth water, or disgust you. If you've ever had it, the mouth watering will start. If you've never been able to experience it then comes the disgust. It doesn't look like the most appealing soup ever... it is green and chunky after all... but this is one case where looks ARE deceiving. Try it. You'll like it.
2 1/4 cups dried split peas
2 quarts cold water, you can substitute chicken or vegetable stock
1 1/2 pounds ham bone
2 medium onions, thinly sliced
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon ground black pepper
1 pinch dried marjoram
3 stalks celery, chopped
3 carrots, chopped
1 large potato, diced
1 large clove garlic, finely diced
In a large pot or bowl, cover peas with cold water and soak overnight. If you need a faster method, simmer the peas gently for 2 minutes, and then soak for l hour.
Once peas are soaked, drain. In your cooking pot add the peas, water or stock, ham bone, onion, pepper and marjoram. Cover, bring to boil and then simmer for 1 1/2 hours, stirring occasionally. Make sure that you use a pot big enough to really be able to stir the peas around with the onions and ham. Remove bone, cut off meat, dice and return to soup. TASTE!!! If necessary add your salt. Add garlic, celery, carrots and potatoes. Cook slowly, uncovered for 30 to 40 minutes, or until vegetables are tender. The peas and potatoes make this thicken up quite a bit. By the time you're done this will be almost like a stew. If you would like it to be thinner, just add more water or stock at the end of cooking.
Serve with biscuits.... :D