Jan's StoryAnyone who has ever eaten split pea soup at Pea Soup Andersen's Restaurant in Buellton, California, knows it is a unique soup. But the recipe is no secret. It's offered to anyone who buys a bag of split peas in their food shop.
This is the recipe off the bag. I've made it many times, and it's always a hit. And, by the way, the stuff by the same name that they sell in cans can't compare in taste to this homemade recipe.
soft water (i have always just used whatever came out of my tap)
split peas (a 14-16 oz. bag)
branch of celery, chopped
large carrot, chopped
1I usually use a 28-ounce package of peas and double the rest of the ingredients. A single recipe isn't quite enough for a family of two adults and two children, or to have enough for a second meal for two adults.
2Combine all ingredients in a large pot and boil hard for 20 minutes, then slowly until peas are tender. (The 50-minute cooking time is approximate. After the 20 minutes of "hard boil," I reduce the heat to a simmer and cook until the peas mash easily.)
3Strain through a fine sieve. (I use my food processor. Don't forget to remove the bay leaf!)
4Reheat to the boiling point.
5I ladle the soup into bowls and sprinkle it with a bit of paprika or Parmesan and a few croutons.
I never add ham or anything to this recipe because I love Andersen's flavor. I sometimes make a different split pea soup with ham that I don't puree--I leave it kind of chunky with the peas adding texture. It just depends upon what I'm in the mood for. :)