Sometimes I feel like I am swimming in a big bowl of split pea soup…everything is very thick and foggy, and it is my job to find a way out of it. There are days when I go to bed, still trying to find my way out – fortunately I have an abundance of flavorful food around me when I get hungry. When people at work find out I have a blog, they often wonder how I do it – and the secret is the food. It is what gets me through the day, what I think about when I need a break – and usually the main topic at the dinner table, after we learn about what happened at school.
I have been so proud of my kids lately – they are really eating so many different foods – including vegetables, it all has to do with how delicious it is. Over the holidays we smoked a ham – yes, we smoked a ham – for those of you who know me, this is not something we normally would do – but as circumstances were, we had one in the freezer, and what a better time? As I looked at this huge ham bone on the counter, with lots of meat still attached, there was only one thing I could think about – split pea soup. This smoked ham made the most delicious split pea soup I have ever made. The kids devoured it, yes, every last drop – and even had seconds. So – the next time I am swimming in split pea soup, I really hope it was made with a smoked ham. I might even stay linger a bit…it is really that good.
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- 1 large onion, chopped
- 1 cup chopped celery
- 1 cup chopped peeled carrots
- 1 smoked pork hock
- 2 cups diced ham (if needed)
- 1 cup green split peas
- 6 cups water
Pour olive oil in heavy large pot or Dutch oven over medium-high heat. Add onion, celery and carrots. Sauté until vegetables begin to soften, about 8 minutes. Add pork and marjoram; stir 1 minute. Add peas, then water, and bring to boil. Reduce heat to medium-low. Partially cover pot; simmer soup until pork and vegetables are tender peas are falling apart, stirring often, about 1 hour and 10 minutes.
Transfer hocks to bowl. Puree 5 cups soup in batches in blender. Return to pot. Cut pork off bones. Dice pork; return pork to soup. If needed, add more ham. Season with salt and pepper. (Can be made 1 day ahead. Refrigerate until cold, then cover. Rewarm before serving.) You can easily double or triple this recipe depending on how big your ham hock is.
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