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A Cooking Adventure with Thom

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Ham and Split Pea Soup

Emeril Lagasse

Serves:  8



This recipe convinced me that split pea soup was good enough to eat.  It is rich in flavor of the ham and vegetables.  It is worth very minute it takes to make it.



1 pound dried split peas
1 ham hock
3 tablespoons unsalted butter
1 cup finely chopped yellow onions
cup finely chopped celery
cup finely chopped carrots
2 teaspoons minced garlic
1 pound Smithfield ham, chopped
1 teaspoon salt
teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
teaspoon crushed red pepper
8 cups water
1 bay leaf
2 teaspoons fresh thyme

Cooking Method

Place the peas in a large pot or bowl, cover with water by 2 inches and soak 8 hours or overnight. 

  • Drain the peas and set aside.

Score the ham hock. 

  1. Place in a pot, cover with water and bring to a boil. 

  2. Reduce heat and let simmer for 1 hour. 

  3. Drain and set aside.

In a large pot, melt the butter over medium-high heat. 

  1. Add the onions and cook, stirring, for 2 minutes. 

  2. Add the celery and carrots and cook, stirring, until just soft, about 3 minutes.

  3. Add the garlic and cook, stirring, for 30 seconds. 

  4. Add the ham hock and ham and cook, stirring, until beginning to brown. 

  5. Add the drained peas, salt, pepper, and pepper flakes, and cook, stirring for 2 minutes. 

  6. Add 8 cups of water, the bay leaf and thyme, and cook, stirring occasionally, until the peas are tender, about 1 hour.  (Add more water as needed, if the soup becomes too thick or dry.)

  7. Remove the bay leaf and discard. 

Adjust the seasoning, to taste, and serve immediately.

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