Tuesday, October 20, 2009

Scandinavian Yellow Pea Soup - Crock-Pot





From the kitchen of One Perfect Bite...This is one of my favorite soups. It was made in the German and Swedish kitchens of my childhood with very different ingredients and results. I usually sided with Hannie when it came to soup, but the truth was, not only did Mrs. P make a better pea soup, she made it every Thursday.

This is a photo, courtesy of David Ryan, of the now grown Anthony, recreating the famous run that convinced us all that Wednesday was spaghetti day in Boston's North End. Anthony's story and a wonderful walk down memory lane can be found here. While Anthony ran home for spaghetti, the Scandinavians in Chicago were busy making potato sausage to accompany the yellow pea soup they served every Thursday night. Mrs. P was a story teller and loved to recount the tale of good King Erik XIV who was poisoned with a bowl of arsenic laced pea soup. Believe me when I say I watched every step she took as she made her soup. What I most liked about it was the smoky undertone it developed. Anyone who has ever made pea soup knows it cooks very quickly. Not so, that made by Mrs. P. She began her soup on Wednesday night with a large slab of uncut bacon that was put in a pot and covered with water to simmer overnight. The following morning she would remove the bacon, skim the broth and add the yellow split peas and vegetables needed to finish the soup. While the soup simmered she would dice the bacon and lightly fry it until it browned and crisped a bit. She refused to use any other meat to flavor the broth. She pureed the soup but added cubed carrots, potatoes, bacon and ham or sausage to it just before it was served. It was wonderful. I have, over the years, altered her recipe a bit. The biggest change is that I now make it in a crock-pot. Here's how it's done.

Scandinavian Yellow Pea Soup...from the kitchen of One Perfect Bite

Ingredients:

1 pound unsliced slab bacon
2 quarts water
2 cups yellow split peas, picked over and rinsed
1 cup chopped onion
1-3/4 cups diced carrots, divided use
1 teaspoon dried thyme
1 bay leaf
Salt and pepper to taste
1 cup diced boiling potatoes
1 cup diced cooked ham

Directions:
1) The night before serving, place bacon into crock-pot. Cover with 2 quarts water. Cover and cook on LOW for 12 hours. Remove bacon. Skim broth.
2) Place split peas in a colander and rinse under cold running water. Pick over and discard any discolored peas. Add peas to crock-pot with onions, 1 cup carrots, thyme and bay leaf. Cover and continue to cook on LOW for 8 to 10 hours.
3) Just before soup is done, place reserved 3/4 cup carrots and potatoes in a microwave dish, cover, and cook on HIGH power for 2 minutes, or until vegetables are tender. If you are going to use bacon, cut it into uniform dice and brown it in a frying pan set over medium heat. Set aside.
4) Puree soup, using a blender, food processor or immersion blender. Add carrots, potatoes, ham and bacon, if using to soup. Season to taste with salt and pepper. Heat through. Yield: 6 servings.

This post is being linked to:

Crock-Pot Wednesday an event sponsored by Deb at Dining with Debbie.


Kahakai Kitchen
for Souper Sunday

32 comments:

KathyB. said...

I will preface my comment by saying that I hate cooked peas and pea soup. Being the granddaughter of Scandinavian immigrants, and married to a man who is also~ sometimes I need to give in and go along. Not so far as to eat this, but my dear Norwegian-American Father-in-law loves pea soup very, very much and we are having him over to eat lunch with us next week. I think just for him I might make this.

Coleen's Recipes said...

What a great bowl of soup, I love pea soup. That photo is beautiful.

Mel @ bouchonfor2.com said...

Wow, how absolutely gorgeous. I especially love how quickly this comes together.
Your photos are stunning too :) Just added you to my feed. Hope to chat soon!

AnnA said...

Hi! The recipe must be in swedish: ÄRTSOPPA.
In sweden some people eat it on thursdays, with punch(liquer) and pancakes as dessert.
Have a nice day, and thank's for visiting my bluemondaypost!/
AnnA

My Little Space said...

The recipe looks really good with all those herbs & also bacon! I bet it tastes wonderful. And what a story of Mrs P!

Debinhawaii said...

Gorgeous soup--love the color!

Donna-FFW said...

Soup in a crock pot, pea soup, no less sounds terrific. All that yummy bacon and ham, delicious. Bet it smells wonderful cooking!!

Barbara said...

My parents loved pea soup- green pea soup. When they were both house bound I made so much of it I never thought I would want to make it again! However your yellow pea soup is tempting me. It's an excellent recipe, hearty and delicious. Good photo! Makes you want to take a sip!

Hootin' Anni said...

BOO!!!

There is an award for you on my Tuesday Blog....[scroll down to the last award...it's yours!!]

Have a TERRORific Tuesday!

Fairy Footprints said...

Oh that looks delicious. Have a wonderful day.

Blessings,
Heidi

Pam said...

Simple and delicious - my kind of soup.

The Blonde Duck said...

LOL. I live how you're like, "I watched every step as she made soup..."

sr_e_wolf said...

I laughed. What a fun story Mary. I wish I had this soup for lunch too.

figtree said...

I am so into soup right now.I look forward to trying this one!

Mary said...

Melody, sr_e_wolf and figtree I hope you all enjoyed your visits here and will be back often.

George Gaston said...

Mary... Reading your post is like taking a trip around the world and getting to eat in all the local hangouts; where the food is always good, plentiful and made from the heart.

I could never read another cookbook or look into my recipe collection and I would be one content man with your delightful meals & dishes you share with us. Thanks will never be enough, but know they are given with full appreciation...

Alyssa said...

There's just something about pureed vegetable soups that I love. How pretty. too!

Foley said...

Looks so good and comfy! Now every time I have slpit pea soup I'll wonder if it is poisoned!! lol

Natashya KitchenPuppies said...

Pea soup is popular in Canada, especially in the French speaking regions. I love your golden version with the lovely chunky additions.

the ungourmet said...

I love the slow cook method for this pea soup. I can imagine it has wonderful flavor and a lovely creaminess to it. I have been looking for a better pea soup recipe. I will try this one. Thanks for sharing it!

bj said...

Ummm, Mary...this does indeed sound and look very good.
Your photos are always so pretty!!

noble pig said...

Perfect Fall weather dish, wish I still had my slow cooker!

Lisa said...

I love pea soup, and how could this not be good made with that bacon? In the crock pot is even better, especially when trying to keep up with our fall schedule. Great idea, Mary!

Jane said...

Hi!
I stumbled upon your blog, and saw this soup. It's almost like we make it here in Norway (Yes, I'm Norwegian), except that we don't puree it. Also i don't use bacon, but salted ham, and sometimes just good hot dogs too. I add a bit more potatoes, and this will help thicken the soup. We eat this with pancakes/crepes dusted with sugar or strawberry jam on the side.

Now, see what you did? You made me crave this for dinner......lol

Mary said...

Jane, welcome to One Perfect Bite. I hope you'll join us on a regular basis.

Olga said...

what pretty color! it'd be great with home-made croutons.

My mom made pea soup quite often when I was growing up...I should make some next week.

hip chick said...

I had never heard this story before. I grew up about 30 miles from the North End and I remember the commercial well. I cannot even believe it's 40 years old!! I never knew that Prince was founded in the the North End. Great to know all this stuff.

emiglia said...

I must be honest when I say that I've never been particularly drawn to pea soup for some reason. That said, your story has convinced me to try this low and slow version. I'm excited!

storyteller said...

Pea Soup has always been a favorite of mine! I could use a tasty bowl right about now. I've just spent a bunch of time creating my 2nd Blogoversary post at Small Reflections. Hope you can drop by. I've created mega-collages of some of my favorite mosaics ... just because.
Hugs and blessings,

Whitney said...

YUM! I have never seen yellow peas before, I didn't even know they existed. Wow I have just been enlightened, I love peas and pea soup!

darnold23 said...

You know, of course, that I love your blog. Just reminding you to come vote for your favorite on this week's Crock Pot Wednesday. Thanks so much for participating and helping to make this a fun event. I look forward to getting to know you.

Sweet and Savory said...

I love pea soup and now I have a recipe to try out. Interesting, this is one soup, I have never made. I plan to do so, now. Thanks Mary.

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