This is my number one most requested soup, by far. One especially blustery day at the Cambria Farmers' Market, I sold out of 15 gallons of split pea in 25 minutes. This is an incredibly simple recipe, but the key is in the preparation. Forget everything you ever learned about a "gentle simmer" and turn those stove dials as high as they can go and boil away. This soup should start thick, get thin during cooking then thicken up as the peas begin to finish up. The addition of salt at the end will thicken the soup up even more. A good quality organic bay leaf will also add a lovely flavor.
- 5 C. Split peas, soaked overnight (see pg. 79 of book)
- 2 heirloom carrots, chopped
- 3 stalks celery (leaves included), chopped
- 1/2 onion (adding the whole thing will make the soup too sweet)
- 3-4 garlic cloves, chopped
- 1 tsp. rosemary, dried, whole
- 1 bay leaf, dried, whole (organic bay leaves are far superior to conventional bay leaves)
- 1 T. parsley, dried
- 4 T. grape seed oil
- Sea salt and black peper, to taste
- Filtered water (enough to cover about 3 inches above level of peas)
In large stock pot, sauté onion in grape seed oil until translucent but not brown, add garlic and continue to sauté an additional 2-3 minutes. Add split peas and water, bring to a boil (note: if soup gets foamy do not panic, turn the heat down to med/low and let the foam absorb into the soup then return to boil). Add carrots and celery and once foam has subsided, add herbs and bay leaf. Cook soup on high heat, stirring every 4-5 minutes (to avoid scalding) for about 40 minutes or until soup has thickened and peas are soft. Add salt and black pepper, turn off heat, ladle into bowls or prepare for refrigeration (see pg. 79 of book).