2 1/4 cups dried split peas
1 piece of Collet Fume approx. .7 kg. ( American translation: a little over a pound of fatty smoked ham. I am not sure if this cut is available in the US but a fatty piece of smoked ham with some meat on it would do it)
1 quart (4 cups) water
1 quart (4 cups) chicken stock
2 onions, diced med. to small pieces
3 stalks celery, chopped to roughly the same size as the onion
2 – 3 carrots, peeled and chopped same size as onion and celery
4 small red potatoes (washed but not peeled), chopped roughly the same size as veggies above
1 clove garlic, minced
1 – 2 T olive oil
4-5 stalks of fresh thyme (roughly 1 1/2 tsp. if using dried)
2 Bay leaves
1 T dried rosemary
2 – 3 T freshly chopped parsley
black pepper to taste
- Rinse peas several times in cold water; pick out any funky pieces that rise to the top. Soak peas in cold water after last rinse for 1 1/2 hours then drain and set aside.
- Meanwhile…prep veggies. The onion, celery and garlic together with the carrot and potato together but separated in a separate bowl.
- Quickly sear the ham in large stock pot. Stir in chopped onion, celery and garlic; add olive oil as necessary to sauté until onion softens and starts to turn translucent. Add chopped carrot , potato and reserved peas. Stir to combine and continue to sauté for a couple of minutes; then add chicken broth, water and herbs. Stir, cover and bring to a boil; then reduce to simmer and continue cooking for 1 1/2 hours. Stir occasionally to avoid hot spots but keep covered.
- Remove ham, pick out stems from the thyme and bay leaves. Cut ham into bit size pieces approx. the same size as the original veggies and return them to the pot. Add pepper to taste. I did not add salt because the smoked ham I used was already very salty but add salt to taste if desired. Continue to cook uncovered for 20 or so minutes to let the soup thicken up.
Garnish with croutons and shredded parmesan cheese.
Yields a bit over 2 quarts, serves 6-8.