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Split Pea Soup

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My grandfather ate with this fork!
Antique Walnut & Pewter Fork circ. 1880 Bohemia
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Recipe by: Chef John V., A Good Cooking Recipe!

History: Created for my dentist Dr. Gordon

Description: A chicken stock version of a popular Fall soup, the is no pork (ham) in this recipe.

Serving size: 4-6

Preparation time: about 1 hour

Amount/Measure/Ingredient:

3 tbsp. olive oil, not extra virgin
2 cups onions, small dice
1 cup celery, small dice
1 cup carrots, small dice
1 tbsp. garlic, minced

1 lb. split peas, gone over for stones and then rinsed
10 cups chicken stock, hot
1 small bay leaf
1 teaspoon thyme, crushed, fresh if possible
1/2 teaspoon white pepper, ground
salt, to taste, start with 2 teaspoons
4 cups, potatoes, diced 1/4 inch

Preparation:

In a heavy bottom soup or stock pot heat the oil on medium high heat. When a small amount of onions sizzle when added to it add all the diced vegetables and garlic. Sauté for about 5-6 minutes or until the vegetable are tender but the garlic is not browned. Add the split peas, chicken stock, bay leaf, thyme, white pepper and salt. Bring the mixture to a boil while stirring often, reduce the heat to low and simmer for about 50 minutes or until the peas start to dissolve slightly. Stir often during this cooking process. In a separate pot cover the potatoes with water and lightly salt the water. Bring to a boil, reduce the heat and cook them until they are tender. Drain, rinse under cold water and put the potatoes on a plate to air dry while the soup is cooking.

When the peas are soft first remove the bay leaf, then remove 1/2 of the soup from the pot and puree in small batches in a blender, being very careful that the hot liquid doesn't explode out of the blender when you first turn it on. Start on very low speed and cover the blender top with a kitchen towel. Add the puree back into the pot and stir well. Add the potatoes, check the seasoning and add more salt and pepper to your taste. You may thin the soup if it is too thick with hot water if needed.

Garnish:

Chopped parsley, fresh ground black pepper and homemade croutons.

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