In my opinion, this is the best ever recipe for pea and ham soup. It is tasty, rich, nourishing and satisfying, with a superb texture and smoky flavour. I make it in the slow cooker.
- I chubby smoked bacon hock
- 1 large onion chopped
- 3 sticks of celery chopped
- 1 packet (500g) dried green split peas
- A good pinch of baking soda
- ½ tsp. curry powder
- 2 tsp. vegetable or chicken stock powder
- a few grinds of black pepper
- 2 or 3 Bay leaves
- a pinch of thyme
- a pinch of mace
- 2 litres water
- Soak the pease in a bowl of water with baking soda for an hour or two
- Rinse, drain and transfer to the slow cooker
- Add the hock, celery, onion, herbs and spices and top up with water
- Cook eight to ten hours or overnight
- Remove the bay leaves and hock Make sure all the bones are out
- Separate the bones, meat and skin with its collagen layer.
- Discard the leaves and the bones, put the meat aside, and return the skin and the collagen to the soup. This is the secret to the texture and flavour.
- Blend with a blender wand or blender until smooth and creamy.
- Break up the meat into small pieces and return it to the soup
- Top up the pot with boiling water and cook for a further hour or so
- Stir well before serving
- Serve with fresh crusty bread, buttered toast or croutons.
Improves each time it is reheated. Keeps in the fridge for a week.
Can be frozen.