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Country-Style Split Pea Soup

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1 c. chopped onion (½ cup sautéed, ½ cup raw into soup)
1 c. diced celery (½ cup sautéed, ½ cup raw into soup)
1 leek, thinly sliced                                          
2 medium carrots, peeled and sliced
2 cloves garlic, minced                             
2 medium potatoes, peeled and diced
1 T. canola oil
1 c. diced cooked ham (add ham bone if you have one)
1 ¼ c. green or yellow split peas, rinsed
1 bay leaf
½ c. heavy whipping cream
salt and pepper, to taste
6 c. chicken broth or water

In a large, heavy saucepan, sauté onion, leek, celery and garlic until they are tender, about 5 minutes. Add peas, broth or water, bay leaf, salt and pepper. Bring to a boil. Reduce heat, cover, and simmer - stirring occasionally, for about 40 minutes, or until peas are tender. Add rest of the onion, celery, carrots, potatoes, and ham to the soup. Cover and simmer about 15 to 20 minutes, or until vegetables are tender but retain their shape. Add water, if necessary, to thin soup. Reduce heat. Add ½ cup heavy whipping cream, cook for 5 minutes, (Do not boil.)