Yid.Dish: Kitchen Sink Yellow Split Pea Soup


I know you know how it is. You look in the fridge and see half a cauliflower here, half a bunch of kale there, maybe a few lonely carrots or turnips hiding beneath the kale at the bottom of the drawer. And a new CSA box is due in a day or two.

Times like this call for a kitchen sink recipe. What I mean by that, is, of course, one that can accommodate whatever must be used in the fridge. I happened to be browsing my copy of Mark Bittman’s “How to Cook Everything Vegetarian” when I saw a recipe for an extremely basic Carribean soup with yellow split peas and ended with a splash of lime. His recipe was so simple though, that I don’t think it had any vegetables in it. With a cold front coming in, I took that as my inspiration, and improvised from there.

Soups are often best when there are different textures making up the whole. I used cauliflower, carrots, kale and turnips in mine, which provided a great contrast. But feel free to use whatever you have on hand. The lime juice really adds that necessary zing at the end.

*Time-saving tip: Prep your onions, garlic, ginger, and Serrano first. After the peas and stock are in, you will have enough time to prep the rest of the veggies.

Kitchen Sink Yellow Split Pea Soup
A neutral oil like grapeseed or canola
2 onions, diced
4 cloves garlic, chopped
1 dried Serrano chile, deseeded and chopped finely (I happened to have one lying around from a CSA box months ago. If you are not a spicy person, omit this. If you are a super-spicy person, use the seeds, too.)
3 Tbs ginger, chopped
2 cups yellow split peas, rinsed
8 cups veggie broth
Whatever mixed veggies you want to get rid of, cut into chunks, strips, etc.
2 limes

Heat a tablespoon or two of oil in a soup pot. Add the chopped onions and cook for 5 to 10 minutes, stirring, until clear. Add the garlic, ginger and Serrano and cook an additional 3 minutes. Stir frequently to prevent sticking.

Add the stock and split peas. Bring to a boil, lower heat, cover and cook for 25 minutes, stirring every once in awhile. After 25 minutes have passed, add your veggies. In another 20 minutes, the peas should all be broken down, and the veggies should be soft. Add salt to taste. Ladle into a soup bowl, squeeze a bit of lime juice over the bowl and enjoy.

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4 Responses to “Yid.Dish: Kitchen Sink Yellow Split Pea Soup”

  1. deva Says:

    my dear alix—you are so lovely to share your recipe. but don’t you think canola oil is….evil?

  2. Alix Says:

    I prefer grapeseed, but I have heard there are problems with that as well (it’s impossible to find organic, and conventional grapes have high levels of pesticides…) so what to use when one wants a high heat oil? I’d love to know what you think. I don’t use olive for everything because it has a taste, and two, because it is not good for high heat.

  3. Arlyn Boltax Says:

    You can try ghee if you are not doing it parve or fleish. (interesting fact: you can actually use ghee if you are casein free!) Its delish but not so neutral.

    Also try coconut oil. ALthough it has a distinct smell, I have found it ends up pretty neutral tasting at the end (or perhaps I am just accustomed to the taste..but I think its worth a try)

    Also, I have found that those yellow split peas take for-evah to cook. I have soaked them and tried par-boiling, but they still take a way long time. Like hours. Anyone have any wisdom to share on this one?

  4. Eli Says:

    Hi Alix et al,

    I would definitely use coconut oil and not grapeseed or canola for this, especially because I think the coconut flavor would be really nice in this recipe. Grapeseed oil is highly processed, as is canola.

    I made yellow split pea soup last week and they took forever, even after soaking overnight! Do you have a pressure cooker? They’d cook in no time.

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