Hearty and vibrant Ham and Pea Soup made with fresh frozen peas will warm up the coldest night!

Hearty Ham and Pea Soup is a fresher take on the classic!

I get tired of cooking, just like you do.  And just like you, I get bored with my same old stand by meals.  I sometimes suffer from brain freeze and can’t come up with anything more creative than scrambled eggs for dinner.  That’s when, just like you, I turn to my favorite bloggers for inspiration.  This soup comes straight from the pages of Souvlaki For the Soul.  Peter, who’s Greek by heritage, blogs from Sydney Australia and he’s super talented.  His food is gutsy and his photos are riveting… the minute I saw his pea soup I knew it had to be mine.  It was the color that got my attention, when have you seen a pea soup this green?  The whole time I was chopping the veggies and simmering the ham hock I was praying that it wasn’t just a trick of Photoshop.  I  rely on visual cues when it comes to eating, and that bright emerald green tells me that the soup is going to be vibrant and fresh tasting, a world away from the grey pea soups that inspired the phrase ‘pea soup fog’.

Ham and Pea Soup --- a vibrant and healthy meal!

So how is this possible?  This soup is made with fresh frozen peas, not the dried kind, (aka split peas) hence, the great color.  But the genius behind this soup is that it doesn’t stop there…the broth is made by long simmering a smoked ham hock, along with some aromatic veggies and herbs.  The hock makes a rich broth, and the meat, which is falling off the bone by the end of the cooking, is added to the soup.  The result is a fresh pea soup with a smokey depth of hammy flavor.  It’s a real winner, I’m telling you.

Thick, rich, and bright green, this soup will warm up a cold night!

You could absolutely do the cooking of the broth in a slow cooker and then finish off the soup after work.  An immersion blender comes in super handy here, so that you can do everything in one pot.  The leftovers only get better.

Ham and Pea Soup

Yield: serves 4-6

Ham and Pea Soup

Ingredients

    the broth
  • 1 or 2 smoked ham hocks (mine came in a pack of 2, so I used both)
  • 1/2 yellow onion, rough chopped
  • 1 carrot, peeled and rough chopped
  • a couple of the tender inner stalks of celery, leaves included, rough chopped
  • 2 bay leaves
  • a bunch of fresh thyme or sage (I used sage)
    the soup
  • 4 tbsp olive oil
  • 1 onion, diced
  • 3 cloves garlic, crushed
  • 1 16 oz bag frozen peas (you can use less peas for a slightly thinner soup if you like)
  • salt and pepper to taste

Instructions

  1. First make the broth. In a large stock pot put the ham hocks and cover with 8 cups of water. Add the onion, carrot, and celery to the pot, along with the bay leaves and the whole bunch of sage or thyme. Bring the pot to a boil and then turn down the heat and simmer, partially covered, for 2 1/2 hours. You can also do this in a slow cooker set on low, for 6-8 hours.
  2. Remove the ham hocks to a plate and then fish out the bay leaves and whole herbs. Use an immersion blender to puree the broth. At this point I also ran it through a strainer just to get out any lumps, but this isn't necessary. (I ended up with a quart of broth.) Set the broth aside.
  3. In a clean soup pot heat the oil and saute the onion and garlic for several minutes until softened.
  4. Add the stock and the peas and heat up to a simmer. Using the immersion blender again, puree the soup. Bring back to a simmer and taste it. Add salt and pepper as needed. Remove the meat from the ham hocks and add to the soup.
  5. Serve hot!

Notes

If your ham hocks do not yield much meat, you may want to augment with extra ham. You can buy a thick slice from a deli counter and chop it up. Recipe slightly adapted from Souvlaki For The Soul

http://theviewfromgreatisland.com/ham-pea-soup/

This soup will warm up the coldest night!

Even though this soup is hearty, it’s not heavy, and so it goes really well with fresh baked whole grain bread.  I’m really pleased with this soup, and I’m completely smitten with the frozen pea ‘method’.  No more dried peas for me, for sure.

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18 Responses to Ham and Pea Soup

  1. This sounds really delicious. thanks for sharing this. :-)

    Simon

  2. sippitysup says:

    It is a pretty soup and a fun seasonal take a springtime classic. GREG

  3. Fantastic colour and flavours, Sue. I made pea soup years ago, but with dried peas. Gotta try this soon!

  4. Penny says:

    Hi Sue, I just made a lentil soup that was less than visually delicious, although it was good. But your pea soup is a total winner. Will be trying this soon. You have made a winner here.

  5. Amanda says:

    I love everything about this!

  6. One of the most beautiful soups! Yum :)

  7. Soup is a must for me in the fall, this sounds so flavorful and delicious!

  8. Caroline says:

    I absolutely love that you use fresh peas instead of dried. I’m so intrigued and can’t wait to try this. Love that vibrant green color!

  9. You got me with the colour too! Brilliant

  10. An oldie but a goodie and so delicious. The colour is so inviting!

  11. Susan says:

    Wow, the color really is vibrant! What a great idea to use frozen peas. Something I have to try!

    • Sue says:

      It’s funny because I made a vegetarian soup like this last spring using frozen peas because I loved the color, but I never posted it because it was just too bland….the ham hocks make the difference!

  12. Jean+Tucker says:

    How many ounces was your bag of frozen peas?

  13. The green in this soup is incredible! Frozen peas are a terrific idea — most split pea soup, although good, is a bit color-challenged. To put it mildly. ;-) Good stuff — thanks.

  14. I am always inspired by you Sue! This soup is no exception. Love a good ham and bean soup but never thought about just using peas. I bet the taste is fresh and earthy – perfect for this time of year. Bravo!

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