Friday, June 27, 2008

Split Pea Soup

Okay, I know it's about 109 degrees outside here in Las Vegas. Not exactly soup weather. However, I awoke this morning with a strong craving for split pea soup after watching a program on the Travel Channel yesterday which featured Pea Soup Andersen's in Buellton, California. I wanted to make it in my pressure cooker, just like they do at Andersen's, however, they don't use any meat in the making of their soup and I just love a good smoky ham hock.

Unfortunately, after taking quite a few snapshots, I found it difficult to make a bowl of split pea soup look appealing. You'll just have to take my word for it. It's much more tasty than it looks!

Here's my recipe:

6 cups water
3 ham hocks
1 carrot, diced
1 medium onion, diced
2 large cloves garlic, chopped
2 bay leaves

Place above ingredients in pressure cooker and cook at pressure for 45 minutes. After letting pressure release naturally, remove ham hocks and set aside to cool.

Add to pot:

6 tsp chicken bouillon
pepper to taste
dash cayenne pepper
1/8 tsp thyme
16 oz dried split peas, rinsed and picked over for debris
1 large stalk celery, diced

Cover and return to pressure. Cook an additional 15 minutes. Let pressure release naturally. Ham hocks should be cool enough by now to remove meat. Discard skin and bones, add meat to the pot. If necessary, add additional water if soup is too thick. Add 1/2 tsp liquid smoke if desired and season with additional salt if needed.

After the soup was finished, I really wanted to eat it with fresh rolls, so I'm waiting right now for them to rise. Not very patiently waiting, I might add.

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