Tuesday, January 25, 2011

Winter stick-to-your-ribs food: Split Pea Soup with Ham and Cheese

 I love to cook, and I love soup. And nothing is better than homemade soup. Well, we're supposed to get hit with yet another snow storm...and it's supposed to be 'baaaaaaaaaaad'. So I decided that it was time to make some delicious winter recipes to keep on hand. This one is a little extra special because when you serve the pea soup...you top it with cheese! Nothing makes something more delicious than cheese. I guess that's the italian in me coming out. Anyway......give it a whirl, and bon appetite!

1 pound(s) dry split peas, picked over, rinsed, and drained   
4 tsp vegetable oil   
2 medium carrot(s), chopped   
1 large onion(s), chopped   
1 stalk(s) (medium) celery, chopped   
2 cup(s) reduced-sodium chicken broth   
2 cup(s) water   
1/4 pound(s) cooked lean ham, cut into matchstick-size pieces   
1/8 tsp black pepper, freshly ground   
2 oz Alpine Lace® Reduced-Fat Cheddar Cheese, cut into 1⁄2-inch cubes, or other brand


  Place the peas in a large saucepan; add enough water to cover them by 2 inches and bring to a boil. Remove    from the heat, then cover and let soak 1 hour. Drain.
Heat a large nonstick saucepan or Dutch oven. Swirl in the oil, then add the carrots, onion, and celery. Sauté until wilted, about 5 minutes. Add the peas, broth, water, ham, and pepper. Bring to a boil; reduce the heat and simmer, covered, stirring occasionally, until the peas are tender, about 1 hour. Top with the cheese and serve immediately, or set aside to cool to room temperature, then refrigerate up to 3 days.

Recipe serves 8...serving size 1 cup.

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