Tuesday, September 25, 2012

Yellow Split Pea Soup

Autumn has officially arrived. It's rainy and cold and all I want to to is curl up under a blanket. The other thing I love to do when the weather gets like this is have cooking sprees. On my days off I tend to hang around the kitchen trying out new recipes or remaking some of my favorites. I just had my second rainy day off in a row and decided it was time to make the first soup of the season. I initially wanted to make a traditional split pea soup, but could only find yellow peas. Then I decided to stick with making a healthy soup since I've been eating way too many unhealthy things over the past 2 days.

This soup is incredibly hearty. I served it as a main course for a family dinner night (which is what we call a night when all my roommates are home and we sit down to have dinner together) and everyone loved it, even the fussy eaters of the house. It's a really healthy soup since the only source of fat is the olive oil. If you can't find yellow split peas, this soup is also great with regular green split peas. I made some fresh rolls to go with the soup and found that it was the perfect dinner on a rainy day.

Adapted from Emeril Lagasse
Serves 8

3/4 tablespoon olive oil
2 cups finely chopped yellow onions
1 medium-large carrot, peeled and finely chopped
salt and pepper, to season
crushed red pepper flakes, to season (about 1/2 teaspoon)
1 heaping tablespoon minced garlic
2 bay leaves
1/3 teaspoon dried oregano
1/2 teaspoon turmeric
1 pound dried yellow split peas, picked through and rinsed
7 cups chicken stock
1 cup white wine

In a large soup pot over medium high heat, warm up the oil. Sauté the onions and carrot until the onions are translucent, about 7 minutes. Add salt, pepper, and red pepper flakes. Cook another 2 minutes. Add the garlic, bay leaf, oregano, turmeric, and peas. Stir and cook for a minute. Add the chicken stock and wine, bring to a boil, reduce heat to low, and cover. Cook for 3 to 6 hours, stirring occasionally. The soup is ready when the peas are soft, but tastes better if you have more time to cook it. If your soup looks too thin, remove the lid and continue cooking the soup so it can thicken. Remove the bay leaves, adjust the seasoning if necessary, and serve hot. If you want a smoother texture, run a hand mixer through the soup until about half of the soup is pureed.

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