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Wednesday, October 19, 2016

French Canadian Pea Soup

Someone asked me to share my French Canadian Pea Soup recipe and I'm happy to do so. This is one of those where I know by heart and don't measure. I don't know that I ever had a written down recipe for this one - my mother taught me how to make it.

You'll need:

500g yellow split peas
2 boxes chicken broth
ham, preferably on the bone
carrots, a bunch
two medium onions
celery, a couple of stalks
thyme, salt and pepper to taste
a tablespoon of oil

Chop your onions fairly small, and cook them in the oil in a big soup pot or dutch oven (I like the dutch oven for how nice and thick the bottom is - harder to burn). When your onions have softened, put in the celery, also chopped fine. Cook until the onions are translucent.

Put in your chicken broth and your yellow split peas and ham bone (if you have a bone, if not, just put in chopped ham meat). You may need to add water to cover everything. Salt and pepper to taste, and add a bunch of dried thyme. Turn the heat up so that it comes to a boil. Once it's boiling, you're going to have to skim the scum off from the top. Stir the whole thing every few minutes as it's coming to a boil.

Peel carrots and cut into rounds - you can put in as many or as few as you want. I really like the carrots in this, they are my favourite part so I stick in a lot. I do at least 4 cups of chopped carrots. I add them to the pot and again add water if I need to in order to cover everything. Bring it back up to a boil, stirring often.

Reduce it to a simmer, and let it cook for a couple of hours, stirring right to the bottom every ten minutes or so. About an hour in, taste the water and add thyme and salt as needed to your taste. I like to let it go until the peas have dissolved and the whole thing is quite thick. When you reheat it, you might need to add a bit of water.

You don't need to use ham - but it does add a lot of flavor. You can totally just add a bone and take it out when you're done but not actually add any meat. Or you can leave it out entire and use vegetable stock if you want a vegetarian version. 

You don't have to cook it until the split peas dissolve - they're totally edible as long as they've softened - you can just cook it long enough to cook the carrot s and then eat.

It's really easy and simple to make and somehow the recipe and instructions are really long...

Anyway, it's one of my favorite soups especially once fall rolls around. I love it with a slice of homemade bread, or a roll with butter (unsalted) to accompany it.

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