SILENCE HAS A NAME - Poetry Chapbook and CD, with Music by Mark Hanley

Sunday, December 26, 2010

Winter's Yellow Split Pea Soup

Know that shelling out a recipe is not easy for me. I'd much rather philosophize about food, or relay a culinary read or adventure. But tonight's repast was so right, so perfect for the moment, so apropos, I simply had to pass it on.

Late this afternoon we went out into the blowing snow and frigid temperatures to shoot some pictures and video, and after we returned, in the heels of lightning and thunder-- even as it snowed -- nothing seemed more of a respite, or more perfect to concoct at the stove than old-fashioned pea soup.

Thank god I had some yellow split peas left, which by the way, I prefer to the green variety.

With no time to let the peas soak, I simply tossed what was left of the bag -- about two fistfuls -- in a colander -- and popped them in a quart of sea-salted boiling water. Personally, I prefer a thick soup, so this recipe is about that.

While the split yellow peas in water perked on low, I brought out my trusty cutting board and my big Tramontina chef's cutting knife, what was left of some vegetables in my frig -- the heel of a celery bunch, an organic carrot, a quarter of a sweet onion, a couple of portobello mushrooms and a couple of strips of Fully Cooked frozen Oscar Mayer bacon. I chopped these up and a couple of garlic cloves and threw them into a pan with some olive oil, sauteed the blend, and finally, added a splash of Tamari. I waited until the soup was thick, near ready, then scooped out three or four heaping serving spoons of the sauteed mix and dumped it into the soup, setting the timer for half an hour. I placed the remaining healthy portion of veggies into a container to store after they had cooled -- to add as garnish to scrambled eggs, to a salad, or even to eat solo, rolled into a pita.

The split pea soup served four. You can garnish it with Turkish paprika. It was just what this wickedly cold night called for.

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