Basic Pea Soup
It wasn’t until I was in my twenties and exposed to vegetarian cookbooks that I began to experiment with pea soup. I added spices like cumin or curry and tried a touch of wine or sherry to make it a little more exotic. The options are infinite. Now, pea soup has become one of my favorites! This recipe is my basic go-to Pea Soup. I usually have most of the ingredients on hand. I especially love it made with yellow split peas, but often mix them with green split peas. Don’t be afraid to expand upon this basic recipe with your own favorite spices (like cumin) and flavors. This recipe makes enough for a crowd and some for the freezer.
- 1 pound split yellow peas
- 1 pound split green peas
- 3-4 quarts water (more as needed)
- 3-4 bay leaves
- 2 teaspoons dry mustard or mustard seeds
- 1 tablespoon salt
- 6 carrots, chopped
- 2 onions, chopped
- 6 stalks of celery, chopped
- 1 sweet potato, peeled and chopped
- 6-8 cloves fresh garlic, minced
- Salt and fresh ground black pepper to taste
- 1/2 cup white wine (optional)
- Small cooked pastas for thicker soup (optional)
- Garnish: fresh chopped tomatoes, fresh parsley or a dollop of sour cream
- Start with a large 8- to 10-quart soup pot. Put peas, water, bay leaves, mustard and salt in the pot and bring to a boil. Lower heat and simmer for about 20 minutes.
- Add chopped (I use a food processor to chop all the vegetables) carrots, onions, celery, sweet potato and garlic and simmer at least 40 additional minutes, adding water as needed. Add salt and pepper to taste and white wine or other seasonings if desired. Cook until all vegetables are soft and well blended. Add water as needed to achieve desired thickness. Adjust seasonings to taste. Soup can be simmered for another hour if desired to thicken and blend vegetables and flavors. An immersion blender can be used if you like your pea soup creamy and smooth. The soup tastes even better the next day and can be frozen.