Here's a recipe I created from browsing other recipes and reaching into my memory bank of watching my mom and stepmom, both excellent cooks. I had to make a substitution or two as my mother-in-law doesn't keep much in the way of herbs and spices around. It's easy and quick to get started. I must say, this came out sooooo yummy and is the perfect comfort food on a cold and stormy day. Serve with crusty french bread, fresh fruit and you have a meal to live for!
SPLIT PEA & HAM SOUP
2 cups dried split peas, sorted and rinsed
1 ham bone, if available
2 cups diced ham - use good quality ham, not the cheap stuff
1 medium onion, diced
2 large peeled and coin sliced carrots, quartering the larger coins
3 stalks of celery, diced
2-3 tablespoons of EVOO or extra virgin olive oil
1 quart chicken stock + 1 quart water
1 teaspoon each thyme, tarragon or mint, lemon pepper
1 bay leaf
2 dashes cayenne pepper and a dash of seasoning salt if needed
In a large soup pot over medium heat add olive oil and veggies, cook until tender. Add ham and bone and cook for 5 minutes more. Add the rest of the ingredients and bring to a boil. Turn heat down to a simmer and let soup bubble gently until the peas break down, about an hour or so. The soup should be somewhat thick when stirred, but not gloppy, yes that's a word. :-) Taste to see if you need any seasonings, and serve with warm bread and fresh fruit. Serves 6-8. Enjoy!