Category Archives: Soups

Split Pea Soup (no bacon, just ham)

I’m taking a break today from the bacon extravaganza and using ham instead. Haha. Though I will be having quite a few more posts with bacon later. Ham is the Jan to Bacon’s Marsha. Don’t you think? Or was that too weird of an analogy? I’ll stop.

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This IS about split pea soup. The split peas can work well on their own, without all the ham stealing the show. So use the ham if you want, but it’s optional. I know some people think it’s a sacrilege to put ham into something as good and virtuous as split pea soup. This is a crock pot recipe which means it’s easy. Put all your ingredients in, turn it on, and that’s it. You’re welcome.

Split Pea Soup in a crock pot

printable recipe

Ingredients:

  • 2 cups dry split peas
  • 1 1/2 cups cooked ham, cubed**
  • 1 cup chopped onion
  • 1 cup chopped celery with leaves
  • 1/4 tsp. pepper
  • 2 cups broth (I used chicken broth)
  • 3 cups water
  • salt to taste (after it is cooked)

**If omitting the ham, please use 4 cups of chicken broth and 1 cup of water.

Directions:

1) Layer ingredients in a crock pot starting from the top of the list, down. Do not mix.

2) Cook on low for 8-10 hours, or high for 4-6 hours. Serve with bread or crackers.

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Did I ever tell you I hate peas? I HATE them. Taste buds work in funny ways. To me, some foods taste like pure rotting flesh while they taste great to others. And peas taste sour and rotting to me. I don’t know why. I hope my taste buds will corroborate with me one day.

But split pea soup is its own separate entity. Cooking them slowly gets rid of all the horrible things I associate with pea flavor. Maybe the peas break down and, I dunno, it tastes a whole lot better as soup than, well, anything else I’ve tried with peas.

So give split pea soup a chance, if you hate peas as well.

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And who hates ham? NO ONE HERE I HOPE.

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But, if you are vegetarian, please omit this part. The soup will still taste great though. And you can always have chopped ham as an optional topping for all the meat eaters.

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The celery and onions will disappear as they cook into the soup. It does give the soup more flavor though. I tried making split pea without celery or onions once…wasn’t as good.

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As I stated in the instructions, if you omit the ham, please use 4 cups of broth + 1 cup water.

If you do use ham, please use 2 cups of broth + 3 cups water.

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Do not mix! The peas need to be towards the bottom and not floating around everywhere in order to cook properly.

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When soup is done cooking, taste and add any additional salt needed. Some hams and chicken broth have more salt than others.

And there you have it. To make this easy for a work day, prepare ingredients the night before. Turn crock pot on before work, get home, and dinner is done.

Cream of Wild Mushroom Soup.

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Ever since the creation of Soupbelly, you noticed I had yet to make one darn soup recipe, right??

We make soup at least once a week. But I never post them. Probably because soup is such a staple, it’s like rice or pasta to me. Soup is a given in any meal. Something you don’t even talk about as a real dish, especially for Chinese families. It’s there on the table every night rather than a glass of water, milk, juice or soda. God forbid we drink soda during our meals! Or anything cold for that matter!

And at my parents’ house, whenever we had guests over for dinner we learned to put glasses on the table and ask if they wanted anything cold to drink. Because Americans treat soup as a dish (or meal) and Chinese people treat soup as a drink. Probably has to do with the richness of the soups.

But I digress…

This isn’t even a Chinese soup. It’s cream of mushroom soup. And it IS more like a meal than a drink, because it’s so rich, velvety and hearty, with wild earthy mushrooms and a creamy texture. So if you love mushrooms like we do, try this recipe out!

Cream of Wild Mushroom Soup (serves 6-8)

printable recipe

Ingredients:

  • 1 pound (approx. 6 cups) finely chopped mushrooms (I used a combo. of baby portabella, white buttons, and shiitake)
  • 1 onion, finely chopped
  • 3 Tbsp. butter
  • 1/2 tsp. salt
  • 1/4 tsp. pepper
  • 1/8 tsp. dried thyme
  • 2 Tbsp. red wine
  • 3 cups chicken broth
  • 3 Tbsp. corn starch
  • 2 cups half-and-half
  • parsley flakes (optional)

Directions:

1) Finely chop all the mushrooms and onions. In a large pot on medium high heat, melt butter. Sauté mushrooms and onions, add salt, pepper and thyme, approx. 4 minutes.

2) Add red wine and chicken broth. Simmer on low – med. low for 10 minutes.

3) Mix corn starch into half-and-half. Turn heat up on soup until right before the boiling point, and add half-and half, stirring until soup is thickened. Take off heat, add additional salt and pepper to taste. Sprinkle parsley flakes (optional). Serve.

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I love mushrooms. Why don’t people love mushrooms? It’s funny that we all have different taste buds that taste things differently. Maybe they taste mushrooms the way I taste peppers. I don’t like peppers that much. I like the smell of them, but when I taste them, they taste sour. I’m hoping my taste buds will react differently one day.

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This is how finely chopped your mushrooms should be. Only because I didn’t want to put my mushrooms in a food processor later on, like most recipes tell you to do. I like the texture sans food processor.

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The onion should be minced as finely as the mushrooms are, unless you were crying your eyes out from the burning pain of onions!!! My eyes were bloodshot after I chopped these up, and they weren’t as minced as I would’ve preferred (the onions, not my eyeballs). So wear goggles if you do this (or put your onion in the fridge for a couple hours before chopping, something I failed to do).

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I forgot the picture of my sautéing the mushrooms. Big crybaby.

Add red wine and chicken broth. Simmer for 10 minutes.

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Add thyme, salt and pepper to the simmering liquid.

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Heat up to the point right before boiling. Add half-and-half thickened with corn starch.

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Stir until thickened. Serve and enjoy!DSC_0028

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