I've been cooking a lot recently, both in an effort to stay away from my local boozer & clear out my freezer, so here goes yet another recipe. I had this soup at my parent's house a few weeks ago & I was really eager to try it out for myself.
2 Ham Hocks
1 lbs Split Peas
1 Medium Onion
4 Cloves Garlic
1 Pack Frozen Peas & Carrots
3 Cups Chicken Stock
Spices: Bay Leaves, Thyme, Oregano, Pepper Flakes, etc.
Add ham hocks to small pot & fill with water (about 6 cups) & boil for 1-1.5 hours (the more, the merrier). Be sure to test for tenderness of the meat & skim off any 'scum' from the surface of the water & reserve boiling liquid. Rinse & pick through your peas, removing any impurities.
While your pork is boiling, dice onion & add to large stockpot with olive oil. Sweat for 5 minutes. Add diced (or pressed) garlic & cook for 2-3 more minutes. Add majority of the pack of carrots & peas, reserving some.
Then add rinsed split peas. Incorporate ingredients & add chicken stock (in this case made from the strained remainder from my Warm Potato & Chicken Salad) & liquid from boiling your ham hocks. Add spices (be careful about the use of salt, the pork stock will be somewhat salty) & bring to a boil & simmer gently, covered, for 90 minutes or until peas are soft..
Remove bay leaves & using an immersion blender, blend the soup. Add remaining peas & carrots for texture & color. Debone & chop ham hocks into bite sized pieces (particularly the skin, which may become chewy). Add the meat to the soup & simmer for a further 15 minutes. Serve with warm, crusty bread.