I cannot believe I have already spent 12 days in the US with my family… the celebrations began the weekend I arrived with a stormy weekend at the Oregon coast! While I was flying over the Atlantic Ocean to be with them, my family was out on the beach digging for razor clams. The following week was full of clam fritters and a magnum bottle of bubbly Spanish champagne! I guess my being home for the holidays was apparently a cause for a pre-Christmas celebration…
… and with the holiday in full swing, there has been a LOT more celebrating this December. On Christmas eve the tree was overflowing with gifts and all of our family members- in one place at one time! The Christmas cookies have been quickly disappearing and the holiday microbrews have been filling our pint glasses- it is really, truly Christmas time in our house!
But on Christmas day after a full two days of family fun, we had a much needed lazy day… after sleeping in, and a light, leisurely breakfast, we chose to stay in our pajamas all day! The most activity during the day were a few games of Cribbage and my brother and I jamming – him on the keyboard, me on the guitar and mom on the couch singing along! That evening when our stomachs began to rumble… Dad used some of the leftover Christmas ham to make split pea soup.
I love soup- especially on a cold, gray, rainy day in Oregon. This is an easy soup to make despite the few hours needed to simmer it with ingredients many people already have on hand… carrots, celery, and an onion! Add a little dried marjoram or oregano, salt and pepper to taste, dried, split peas and round it off with some leftover ham bits and you have yourself a tasty post-Christmas dinner.
From our family kitchen to yours… Merry Christmas!
Split Pea and Ham Soup
recipe by Papa Hume – one of my favorite cooks on Earth!
Note: this recipe uses the ham bones and discarded vegetable pieces to first make a fresh broth. If you didn’t save the bones from your ham then simply use a vegetable broth in place of the homemade broth.
prep: simmer ham bones, butts and tips of carrots, ends of the onion, and celery tips in 2 liters of water for three hours to make the broth
soup ingredients: 4 celery stalks, 2 carrots, 1 medium onion, 1 tablespoon marjoram, 1 pound of dried split peas and 1 cup of ham pieces
while the broth is simmering, dice all veggies and ham and set aside
when broth is ready strain into another large soup pot to separate the liquid from the bones and vegetable pieces
throw away the bones and vegetable pieces- they no longer have flavor because it is all in the broth now!
add the diced veggies, dried herbs, and split peas to the broth and simmer for about 45 minutes -stirring every 10 minutes
when the carrots are just about tender (about 50 minutes into cooking) add the ham pieces and simmer for another 10 minutes
serve hot with fresh bread, crackers or your other favorite soup pairings