This recipe for split pea with cured pork soup is as tasty as it is unattractive. In other words, it’s delicious.
I recently had ham two weeks in a row. Once for Easter and then again at a dinner for my Mom’s birthday. Both times I was reminded of one of my favorite meals, split pea soup with ham. My mom regularly makes this soup with leftover ham. Since I didn’t think she’d appreciate me driving off with her pork scraps, I was on a quest to find and make my own split pea with ham soup.
I stopped at my local grocery store shortly before closing time, and the ham hock had already been stored away for the evening. I had to do some improvising and picked up a great alternative: salt cured pork. Luckily, this substitution works perfectly and is just as good as soup made with ham hock.
Packing Split Pea with Cured Pork Soup on the Go.
Although this split pea with cured pork soup recipe takes an hour to cook and has to be made at home, it travels just as well (if not better) than other lunch recipes. This is one of those recipes that looks more intimidating to make than it really is. Preparing the ingredients takes just a few minutes and then the soup simmers until the peas are cooked through. I made mine on a Sunday and read a book for an hour while the soup prepped. To pack for lunch, I store in glassware that fits in my lunchbox and can be heated in my office microwave. This recipe makes enough soup to last the week. It really is a great meal for lunch on the go.
If you like the taste of pork but want a meat alternative, try the recipe for vegan mango black bean tacos.
There are two kitchen tools that I used for this recipe and highly recommend. The first is a hand blender by Cuisinart. A handheld blender lets me puree soups directly in the pot. This saves a huge mess as I don’t have to juggle soup from a pot, to a blender, to a bowl, and then back to the pot again. The second product I recommend is a cast iron dutch oven. Dutch ovens are perfect for soups and stews. This is an excellent pot to sauté vegetables and then add the remaining ingredients to simmer. I don’t have to use one pot for sautéing and then another for simmering. Everything can be cooked in one pot saving on dishes and time.
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- Fill a large bowl with water and add split peas so the peas are completely covered by water.
- Place cast iron pan on stove and turn to medium-low heat.
- While pan heats, chop onions, garlic, and celery.
- Melt butter in heated pan and add bay leaves, let bay leaves brown for 1-2 minutes. Add onions, garlic, and celery. Sauté 3-5 minutes until onions are translucent, do not brown.
- Drain water from peas and add peas to pot. Add pork and 6 cups of vegetable broth. Turn stove to high.
- Once soup begins to boil, turn stove to low heat, cover, and simmer for an hour until peas are soft.
- Optional: Discard bay leaves use a blender to puree soup.