This Ham and Split Pea Soup is one of my favourite winter soups and perfect for all this cold weather. Simple to make and really warming, I could eat bowls and bowls of it. I make this every year with the stock that results from boiling my Christmas Ham although it’s also really good made with a couple of chicken or ham stock cubes if you can’t wait until then, as I often can’t.
This soup uses just a few simple veggies, some good stock and dried peas. I always find it amazing that such simple ingredients can make such a gorgeous meal!
Split peas are often easy to find next to the dried lentils in big supermarkets during the winter but if you can’t find them, try looking in the Asian section of the supermarket where they will be called tor dal (these are traditional split peas) or chana dal (these are split chickpeas). I’ve used both and both work well.
I always serve bread and cheese with my soup. I have so much cheese in my fridge at the moment that I’m planning to make my Stilton and Broccoli Soup over the next few days. I’ll serve it with my gorgeously rustic Irish Soda Bread. And if you have some leftover turkey in the freezer, don’t forget my Leftover Turkey Soup with Melted Parmesan Strips. Here’s to continued feasting!
Recipe adapted from Diana Henry’s Swedish Thursday Soup.
Ham and Split Pea Soup
- 25 g (1 tablespoon) butter
- 1 onion (finely chopped)
- 2 leeks (thinly sliced and washed well)
- 3 cloves garlic (crushed)
- 2½ pints of stock (I use ham or chicken)
- 280 g (1⅓ cups) split peas
- 300 g carrot (peeled and cut into small dice)
- Salt and pepper
- A handful of diced ham (optional)
- Melt the butter over a low heat. Add the onion, leeks and garlic and cook, lid on, over a low heat until soft. This should take about 15 minutes. If the vegetables show any signs of browning, add a small splash of water to the pan.
- Add the stock and split peas to the pan, cover and bring to the boil. Simmer gently for 45 minutes then add the carrot and simmer for a further 30 minutes.
- When the split peas are disintegrating, and the carrot is soft, check the seasoning, adjusting if necessary and add the ham if using. Simmer for a couple more minutes then serve.