SPLIT PEA SOUP
Don’t punish yourself and your loved ones by consuming commercially produced overcooked, high in unhealthy additives, and low in nutrition soups. This scrumptious soup is a wholesome version of a classic favorite. Enter the comfort zone and cook up a pot of yum!
1 cup uncooked dried split peas
4 cups water
1 – 2 soup bones: skinless turkey or chicken necks or backs, or a smoked piece of turkey, or smoked pork neck bones (optional)
1 large carrot, sliced, then chopped
1 medium yellow onion, chopped
4 cloves garlic, finely chopped
1stalk celery, sliced, then chopped
1 dried bay leaf
1 teaspoon dried tarragon
Salt and pepper to taste
4 tablespoons olive oil if not using bones or meat
1. Check the peas and discard any debris. Rinse the peas in a strainer and place in a large saucepan. Add the water, cover; and bring to a boil over high heat. Reduce the heat to medium-low and cook 2 minutes. Turn off the burner and let the peas stand in the hot water for1 hour.
2. Add the bones or meat, if using, cover, and cook the soup slowly over medium-low heat 35 minutes. Prepare all the vegetables in a bowl. If not using bones or meat, still, do cook the peas 35 minutes.
3. Mix in the vegetables, bay leaf, and seasonings. Add the oil if not using meat or bones, and cook 15 – 20 more minutes, stirring occasionally. Discard the bay leaf.
* Tip: You can also soak the peas in the water for 8 hours or overnight, and skip the precooking stage in step one. Before you start, though, be sure and discard any debris mixed with the dry peas, and rinse the peas in a strainer. Proceed with step 2 and on.