This is a classic soup – so classic that I couldn’t find it in any recipe book. Apparently we are to learn how to make it as a hereditary skill. This recipe makes a huge vat of soup, but I don’t see how you could make much less.
- 1 large ham bone, ham hock, or left-over cooked ham
- 1 large onion, finely chopped
- 3 cloves of garlic, chopped
- 3 medium carrots, chopped into small chunks
- 3 stalks of celery, finely chopped
- 3 potatoes, diced (optional)
- 500g bag of yellow or green split peas – rinse the peas.
- 1.5 litres of stock (ham stock, chicken stock or vegetable stock)
- 2 bay leaves
- 1 level tsp smoked paprika
- olive oil
- salt and pepper to taste
- In a large soup pan, fry the chopped onions and celery gently in the olive oil, until soft. Add the garlic and cook for a minute or two longer
- Add the carrots, peas, stock, ham, paprika and bay leaves to the pan, and bring to the boil.
- Cover and simmer for 30 minutes. Stir occasionally and add water if it is becoming too thick.
- If you are going to add potatoes, do so at this point, and simmer for another 30 minutes.
- Remove the ham bone from the pan and set it aside to cool. Pull any meat off the bone, shred it and return it to the pan.
- Season with salt and pepper if required, and heat to a simmer before serving.
If you want to freeze this soup, don’t add any potato. If you’d like a smoother soup, you can blend it with a soup wand before adding the shredded ham.