Pandemic Pea Soup

Some people on Twitter enjoy posting examples of their culinary skills, which admittedly are impressive. However, those posts have never ignited a desire in me to attempt any such creation.

One reason for this is that I live on a limited budget, party due my rent consuming a huge portion of my monthly income, and so I am hesitant to experiment with dishes. Another is that I have a small kitchen and basic cooking gear.

One of my go to dishes for many years has been Split Pea Soup. My favorite version of it requires a frozen ham bone from Honey Baked Ham and fresh ingredients. During the pandemic I have come to rely on a recipe which uses less expensive, shelf stable ingredients. It isn’t the best split pea soup, but it is filling, nutritious, inexpensive per serving, and easy to prepare. It also provides many servings and portions of it can be frozen in small containers to re-heat when desired.

1 bag of green split peas (16 oz.)

6 cups of water

1 or 2 bags of frozen petite onions (thawed and chopped, 14 oz.)

2 cans of peas & carrots mix (drained, 15 oz. each)

1 bag of frozen broccoli (16 oz.)

(Optional) 1 can of sweet yams (rinsed and drained, 40 oz.)

2 tins of regular or reduced sodium Spam (chopped, 12 oz. each)

1 to 2 tablespoons of minced garlic

1 or 2 teaspoons of pepper

(Optional) 1 or 2 bays leaves

(Optional) 5 or 6 pitted prunes (chopped)

Rinse split peas and then soak in 6 cups of hot water in a large pot for around an hour. Thaw and chop frozen onions.

Add frozen broccoli, onions, garlic, pepper, bay leaves, and pea & carrot mix.

Bring to a boil for several minutes then reduce to a low heat, stir well, and cover.

Check on the soup at least every half hour and stir well until the majority of the peas and most or all of the broccoli have dissolved.

Once most or all of the broccoli has dissolved add the chopped Spam and sweet yams. Bring to a boil for several minutes and stir well then reduce to a low heat.

Cook for an additional hour or more depending on your preference for consistency. Remember to stir well at least once every half hour.