Cooking a recipe that is a family favorite can be a little intimidating, especially when the recipe is from your husband's family! But I think this soup was pretty close to the original.
Since we moved out of state several years ago, this is an annual tradition that my husband has missed, so I figured it was time to try and recreate this soup. My mother-in-law (Rosemary), would use the leftover Easter ham to create a thick, creamy ham and pea soup, with just a hint of clove in the background. The addition of celery, carrots and potato makes this soup a hearty meal.
This soup does take some time to prepare, but the hands-on time is minimal. Just let the soup cook low and slow and you have a pot of soup ready in about 2 1/2 hours. Serve with crackers, either crushed right into the soup or on the side. The family is equally divided on the proper method of how the crackers should be served, lol. Enjoy!!
1 pkg Hurst's Ham Peas Green Split Peas
1 Large Meaty Ham Bone
2 cups Cubed Ham
2 quarts Water
1 Whole Onion
1 tsp Ground Black Pepper
1/2 tsp Kosher Salt
1/4 tsp Ground Cloves
2 Bay Leaves
2 stalks Celery, diced
3 large Carrots, peeled and chopped
2 medium Potatoes, peeled and cubed
Rinse the peas in cool water several times, return peas to the pot and cover with 2 quarts of water. Add the ham bone and the cubed ham to the pot along with the whole onion (leave the onion whole so it can be removed later), then add the salt, pepper, cloves and bay leaves. Bring the mixture to a boil, reduce heat to low and simmer for 90 minutes, stirring occasionally.
After 90 minutes, use a slotted spoon to remove the whole onion and discard, then remove the ham bone and place on a plate. Remove any extra ham from the bone, return the ham to the pot and discard the bone. Stir the soup and add the celery, carrots and potatoes to the pot. Continue to simmer over low heat for about 45 minutes or until the veggies are very tender. Add salt and pepper to taste. If a thinner soup consistency is desired, add a bit more water during the last 30 minutes of cooking. Serves about 8 - 10 large servings.