Wednesday, December 28, 2011

Leftover Holiday Ham Split Pea Soup

If your family is like mine, every holiday get-together involves some ham.  And there are always leftovers sent home with various recipients.

And, if your like me, that ham sits in your refrigerator for a day or two waiting for a decision.  You can have ham-on-bun for days on end (I've recently done that and it wasn't pleasant), throw it in the freezer and parcel it out, have it for dinner with a different side for several days or make soup!

I've been reading a slow cooker (or crock-pot) recipe book titled, "Make it Fast, Cook it Slow", by Stephanie O'Dea and used her recipe (pg. 208) for split pea crock-pot soup as a guide.  The only change I made was to use leftover ham slices rather than the bacon or ham hock she suggests.

These are the ingredients I added to the crock-pot:

I started with a pound of organic split peas from our local health foods store for about $2.75 and soaked them with water overnight in the refrigerator -- though soaking isn't necessary if you plan to have them in the crock-pot for 8 hours.  For soaking, I placed mine in a large bowl and covered with water about 2 inches deep.

Next I diced up 1/2 a yellow onion, 1 potato (peeled), and 1 cup of carrot.

 I didn't have vegetable broth on hand, so I used 4 cups of organic chicken stock from Costco.

 I cut the leftover ham slices into chunked pieces reserving some ham to add in later.

Next, I threw it all in a 6-quart crock-pot along with an additional cup of water a tsp. of salt and a bit of fresh ground black pepper and cooked it on low for 6 hours (you may need two more hours if you didn't pre-soak your peas).

After six hours of low and slow cooking, I ladled the ingredients into the Vitamix Blender and blended on high for about 20-seconds before returning the smooth and creamy soup to the crock-pot.

I then added some additional ham chucks to the soup for texture and put the crock-pot on warm until we were ready to serve it!

A delicious and satisfying post-holiday soup for those cold winter days!

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