Split Pea Soup

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EliseT
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2003/07/15 16:13:07 (permalink)

Split Pea Soup

It feels too hot for soup, but it's time to use that Easter hambone in the freezer before it's too late. Last time I made it it was too salty to eat. I kept adding and removing potatoes to soak up the salt with no luck. Maybe some hams are just too salty for soup? What are your suggestions and recipes?
#1

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    VibrationGuy
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    RE: Split Pea Soup 2003/07/15 16:20:56 (permalink)
    My suggestion is to not use ham. ;0)

    The hams I like to eat are usually one step away from Lot's wife in terms of saltiness. For soup, I buy a picnic at the store; plenty of meat, not too much fat, and just the right size to flavor a big pot of split pea soup.

    Eric, Dreaming Of A Bowl, With Heavily Butterred Rye Toast On The Side
    #2
    kangolpimp
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    RE: Split Pea Soup 2003/07/15 16:25:04 (permalink)
    If you simmer your pea soup really long as I do (3 to 4 hours) then I recommend using at least 1/3rd dried whole peas, presoaked. You could use the quick soak method for these, works well. It makes for a very rich and thick final product. Half split half whole also works, but my experimentation has found that 2 to 1 split to whole works best. Next time leave some of the potatoes in your soup, they will also help to thicken. Other root veggies work too, such as yucca and batata and sweet potatoes. All of these should be added in the last hour, of course, else they'll disintegrate. Add about twice as many sliced/diced carrots as you think you want. Not only does this sweeten the soup, but the ultra soft discs taste great in every spoonful. Sautee the onions/carrots/celery/garlic in olive oil for 10 minutes before adding the water. If your soup pot is heavy bottomed, makes sense to do this sauteeing right there, no need to dirty a sautee pan. I love pea soup, myself.
    #3
    mayor al
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    RE: Split Pea Soup 2003/07/15 16:28:44 (permalink)
    We freeze the bone(s) from some of our BBQ Pork SHoulder to flavor the soup when it is that time of year. A few scraps of 'Que may still be attached. (This is smoke-cooked not soaked in sauce).
    A generation back the school where I taught would do a pot of pea soup on Monday (for the staff, not part of the kids lunch). On Monday it would be kind of watery, but by Thursday or Friday you could stand a spoon in it. I loved that thick sludge soup!
    #4
    catosaurus
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    RE: Split Pea Soup 2003/07/15 16:50:07 (permalink)
    This may sound excessive, but I've found great success with the following inclusions into a batch of pea soup:

    1 bunch of celery (yes, the entire bunch), chopped
    1 large onion, chopped
    4 cloves garlic, minced
    1 tsp dried thyme
    The aforementioned ham bone

    For the last hour, I add 6 carrots, sliced, and 2 large potatoes, cubed.

    Make sure to salt and pepper sufficiently.

    The soup expands in the refrigerator (via some unexplained physical process), so that you've got to thin it each time you reheat it.
    #5
    EliseT
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    RE: Split Pea Soup 2003/07/15 17:08:09 (permalink)
    quote:
    Originally posted by VibrationGuy

    My suggestion is to not use ham. ;0)

    The hams I like to eat are usually one step away from Lot's wife in terms of saltiness. For soup, I buy a picnic at the store; plenty of meat, not too much fat, and just the right size to flavor a big pot of split pea soup.

    Eric, Dreaming Of A Bowl, With Heavily Butterred Rye Toast On The Side



    I assume you mean a "picnic ham"? I have heard of that, is it like a "country ham"? I get my hams mixed up. Anyways, the only reason I have to make soup is this albatross of a hambone hanging around my neck. What else am I to do with it....hmmmm, I could bonk someone over the head with it, then feed it to the detectives investigating the murder, thus destroying the evidence...(insert evil laughter and hand wringing)....yesssssss
    #6
    Lone Star
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    RE: Split Pea Soup 2003/07/15 17:19:14 (permalink)
    Could you possibly soak the ham in some water for a while to lose some of the salt? Eric may have some thoughts on that.

    Osmosis is your friend
    #7
    catosaurus
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    RE: Split Pea Soup 2003/07/15 17:23:26 (permalink)
    EliseT - Hambone in pea soup = GOOD

    All those who say otherwise are misguided, at best. (Not to criticize going out and purchasing a smoked picnic, but the whole idea behind saving that hambone is that it's an economic way to add yummy ham flavor to its natural ally, the split pea. Going out and spending more money on another piece of smoked piggy thus detracts from the frugal nature of the recipe.)
    #8
    VibrationGuy
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    RE: Split Pea Soup 2003/07/15 17:45:19 (permalink)
    This assumes I have pig *left*. ;0)

    Here's my problem with using ham: first, I like ham a lot, so there's rarely leftovers. Second, I want lots of ham in my soup, in big shreddy pieces that I put in after the soup is done. Third, I like really really really really salty country hams. Finally, I need the room in my freezer for other things, so I'm rarely inclined to *keep* the hambone, and by the time I can polish off a ham, I'm bored with it, so I don't want to make soup right away.

    A "picnic ham" is a bit of a misnomer; it's a cured, smoked hunk of pig similar to ham, but it's made with the front leg, rather than the hams, and it gets it's name from being appropriately-sized for a picnic. Commercial water-added smoked picnics are actually not bad, and they're just the right size for a ham omelette and a pot of soup. Because they're not a country ham, they're not as salty and dry, so they don't screw up the soup or make the peas/beans hard (salt and bean hardness is a really interesting topic, but I'll spare everyone).

    Cooks Illustrated tried blanching various pieces o pig to make split pea soup, with limited success. I like the fat, so blanching to me removes the best part of the pig.

    I'm with you on the murder, Elise - throw the bone into the bay when you're done; the crabs like ham almost as much as humans.

    Eric
    #9
    Hiram Callahan
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    RE: Split Pea Soup 2003/07/15 17:58:33 (permalink)
    Speaking of frugality, back around St. Pat's, when the weather (and price) were right, I made a split-pea soup from the stock left over from a New England boiled dinner. The stock had been salty/meaty before I added the vegetables, flavorful and sweet after the veggies (cabbage, onions, potatoes, carrots, turnips, parsnips) had cooked, too. I added the same vegetables less cabbage and plus sweet potatoes to the soup. The result was yummy, but a bit sweet, so perhaps that'll help. I find parsnips always add a nice sweetness to soup stock, so perhaps adding some when the bone is cooking might do the trick. It seems to me some dill might help too, if that's not too radical.
    #10
    EliseT
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    RE: Split Pea Soup 2003/07/15 18:32:46 (permalink)
    After Easter, the markets practically give away hams. I buy one and get the big cleaver out. The nicest "steaks" are set aside for dinner and sandwiches for a few days. Then I get out gallon freezer bags. I bag up the fat to later melt and use for a green bean vinagrette. I bag up shreds of ham for Pesto ala Trapanese and stratas. I leave ALOT of meat on the bone and bag that up for pea soup. So they aren't really "leftovers" per se. Now just think what I could do with that whole hog!

    I think I WILL soak that hambone in water for a bit. And the addition of a sweet potato sounds inspired! Now I have to go back to the store for that sweet potato, whole dried peas and more celery!
    #11
    Sundancer7
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    RE: Split Pea Soup 2003/07/15 19:20:34 (permalink)
    quote:
    Originally posted by Al-The Mayor-Bowen

    We freeze the bone(s) from some of our BBQ Pork SHoulder to flavor the soup when it is that time of year. A few scraps of 'Que may still be attached. (This is smoke-cooked not soaked in sauce).
    A generation back the school where I taught would do a pot of pea soup on Monday (for the staff, not part of the kids lunch). On Monday it would be kind of watery, but by Thursday or Friday you could stand a spoon in it. I loved that thick sludge soup!


    Mayor, I had never quite thought of it like that but you are exactly right. Thick Sludge soup

    That was funny. Had it all the time in high school. Sorta like it also.

    Glad you are now a moderator. You are the best.

    Paul E. Smith
    knoxville, TN
    #12
    Stogie
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    RE: Split Pea Soup 2003/07/15 20:41:15 (permalink)
    Elise....

    I have been making the Pea Soup below for many, many years. I use smoked ham hocks as the flavoring of choice and I have never, ever had a salty batch of soup. Check your recipe against this one and notice I add no salt. Your saltiness may be coming from your stock as well...you ARE using a chicken stock right?

    Anyway, this is NOT for the faint of heart, but most great food is not, so have at it!

    Enjoy!

    Stogie

    Kevi's "Hold Your Heart" Pea Soup

    4 Ham hocks or other bones
    2 cup(s) Onion(s), chopped
    1 cup Carrot(s), chopped
    2 Garlic clove(s), minced
    2 cup(s) Celery, chopped
    2 tablespoon(s) Butter
    1 1/2 cup(s) Green peas, dried
    12 Whole black peppercorns
    3 Parsley stalk(s)
    1 Bay leaf(s)
    2 tablespoon(s) Fines herbes
    6 cup(s) Chicken stock
    1 cup Evaporated milk

    PREPARATION:
    Brown ham bones and veggies in butter.
    Slightly crush the peppercorns and add along with peas, herbs and stock.
    Cover, bring to boil and simmer for 3 hours.
    Remove ham bones, dice meat and set aside.
    Force the remaining ingredients through food mill or sieve.
    Reheat with reserved meat and evaporated milk, thin with additional stock if desired.
    Salt and pepper to taste and then add some sherry just prior to serving.
    #13
    mayor al
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    RE: Split Pea Soup 2003/07/15 21:12:13 (permalink)
    Elise,
    The Frozen Ham Murder Case was the best ever Alfred Hitchcock program!!!
    Try a 'milk-soak' for your ham...does wonders for eliminating the saltiness.
    #14
    EliseT
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    RE: Split Pea Soup 2003/07/15 21:46:14 (permalink)
    STOGIE: Fines herbs and evaporated milk? Wow! Fanceeeee! I was just using water for the super-salty batch. I'm afraid to use salty canned broth and don't have a chicken (and I am NOT going to the store AGAIN even though I'm thinking, "Geez..parsley! Of course!").

    Mr Mayor, Moderator, Duke of Earl, Earl of Sandwich etcetera: Contrary to popular belief, I am not living on a dairy farm. That would take at least 2 or 3 gallons of milk! Do you know what my mother would do to me if I wasted milk like that? Do you know what my boyfriend would do if I made him have hammy milk on his cornflakes?
    #15
    VibrationGuy
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    RE: Split Pea Soup 2003/07/15 22:02:04 (permalink)
    Geez, maybe instead of half a hog, you need a whole cow. . . .

    Eric
    #16
    EliseT
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    RE: Split Pea Soup 2003/07/16 03:17:22 (permalink)
    Holy cow!
    #17
    VibrationGuy
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    RE: Split Pea Soup 2003/07/16 03:36:41 (permalink)
    No, those Hindu cows are too tough after they've stopped giving milk.

    Eric, Who Likes Beefmaster, But Has No Idea How They Milk
    #18
    howard8
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    RE: Split Pea Soup 2003/07/16 08:24:34 (permalink)
    I add some heavy cream at the end of the cooking process to my pea soup. Also I found adding diced turnips adds another enticing layer of flavor to pea soup.
    #19
    Cosmos
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    RE: Split Pea Soup 2003/07/16 08:42:25 (permalink)
    I use smoked turkey drumsticks, as we rarely eat ham. They impart the needed smokey flavor, and I think the meat has better texture.
    #20
    Oneiron339
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    RE: Split Pea Soup 2003/07/16 08:58:27 (permalink)
    quote:
    Originally posted by Sundancer7

    quote:
    Originally posted by Al-The Mayor-Bowen

    We freeze the bone(s) from some of our BBQ Pork SHoulder to flavor the soup when it is that time of year. A few scraps of 'Que may still be attached. (This is smoke-cooked not soaked in sauce).
    A generation back the school where I taught would do a pot of pea soup on Monday (for the staff, not part of the kids lunch). On Monday it would be kind of watery, but by Thursday or Friday you could stand a spoon in it. I loved that thick sludge soup!


    Mayor, I had never quite thought of it like that but you are exactly right. Thick Sludge soup

    That was funny. Had it all the time in high school. Sorta like it also.

    Glad you are now a moderator. You are the best.

    Paul E. Smith
    knoxville, TN
    So Al is now a roadfood cop too. I must watch what I say. Al, I really didn't mean it when I said you watched the Mason Dixon line being made, you just read about it in the following week's newspaper
    #21
    mayor al
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    RE: Split Pea Soup 2003/07/16 09:48:28 (permalink)
    One iron..
    I'm gonna deputize ORT to patrol the food-stops in Georgia and keep you eating at home if'n you keep reminding me that being retired also means I am not a "Spring Rooster" anymore.
    #22
    Oneiron339
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    RE: Split Pea Soup 2003/07/16 10:53:42 (permalink)
    quote:
    Originally posted by Al-The Mayor-Bowen

    One iron..
    I'm gonna deputize ORT to patrol the food-stops in Georgia and keep you eating at home if'n you keep reminding me that being retired also means I am not a "Spring Rooster" anymore.

    Al, I'm older than u but probably much uglier, and I think I can outrun ORT.
    #23
    VibrationGuy
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    RE: Split Pea Soup 2003/07/16 13:46:19 (permalink)
    You know, the smoked turkey leg idea is pretty good; there's a local soul food place that uses them in their greens, and they're quite delicious, if not especially unctuous.

    Eric
    #24
    Cosmos
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    RE: Split Pea Soup 2003/07/16 18:07:45 (permalink)
    Unctuous:(ungk' choo-es)
    1. Having the characteristics of oil or ointment: Greasy
    2. Containing or composed of oil or fat.
    3. Abundant in organic materials <unctuous soil>
    4. Marked by affected, exaggerated, or insincere earnestness : offensively smooth or suave <unctuous flattery>

    Man, thanks, I had to look that one up. Which one were you shooting for? You mean like gamey and greasy? If so, the legs I can get at the store are not at all.
    #25
    Sundancer7
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    RE: Split Pea Soup 2003/07/16 18:58:03 (permalink)
    Cosmos, I am glad you looked it up. I did not want to ask. Always need to add new words to the vocab. This poor old East Tennessee boy ain't use to those citified words.

    Paul E. Smith
    Knoxville, TN
    #26
    VibrationGuy
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    RE: Split Pea Soup 2003/07/16 20:41:26 (permalink)
    Unctuousity (which I'm pretty sure isn't it the dictionary) is my favorite of food qualities; greasy and ointment-like don't convey the beauty that is melty collagen, rendering fat and lip-smacking goodness. Some people crave Golden Brown and Delicious, I crave rich, fat-laced, chewy/gooey.

    Eric
    #27
    CheeseWit
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    RE: Split Pea Soup 2003/07/16 20:43:09 (permalink)
    Did you hear about the guy who sat at the counter in a diner and ordered chicken soup. The waitress takes the order and yells back to the chef, "one chicken". The customer changes his mind and asks for Pea soup. Without missing a beat, the waitress yells out "hold that chicken and make it pea!"
    #28
    EdSails
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    RE: Split Pea Soup 2003/07/16 20:47:57 (permalink)
    quote:
    Originally posted by CheeseWit

    Did you hear about the guy who sat at the counter in a diner and ordered chicken soup. The waitress takes the order and yells back to the chef, "one chicken". The customer changes his mind and asks for Pea soup. Without missing a beat, the waitress yells out "hold that chicken and make it pea!"


    I really think we're ready for a humor thread!
    And I appoint CheeseWit the Moderator of it!
    #29
    EliseT
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    RE: Split Pea Soup 2003/07/17 04:40:40 (permalink)
    You guys rock! I just made what may be the best split pea soup EVER made! I soaked the hambone overnite in water, changing the water twice. Then I brought it to a boil with a bag of split peas (no whole dried peas in the market) a little chicken stock, water, thyme, bay leaf, parsley and 1 baking potato. Then I turned it down to a simmer. I sauteed and added (diced)1 onion, 3 celery stalks, 3 cloves garlic, and 1 1/2 cups carrot. After 2 hours, I removed the hambone and took the ham off, which I put back in the pot. I mashed that baking potato up against the sides of the pot to thicken the soup. Then I added 2 diced White Rose potatoes, 1 diced Garnet sweet potato, and a Polska Kielbasa (cut into 1" pieces). A little freshly ground pepper, another 1 1/2 hours on the stove and IT WAS SOOOOOO GOOOOOD!!!! Thank you!!!

    PS. Is greasy mutton rambunctious???
    #30
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