Split peas have always been considered food for the poor. They were easy to store through the long months of winter and very inexpensive. Their nutritional qualities are great though! Peas are packed with protein and fiber. I ate my fair share of Split Pea Soup during my preschool years in Russia. In my government-run preschool we had the Pea Soup every other day. We all hated it. I now love it because it's delicious and nutritious when cooked right.
Almost every nation around the world has its variations of the pea soup. This is a German version (minus the ham) with smoked paprika.
- 2 tbsp olive oil
- 1 large yellow onion, chopped
- 2 large carrots, chopped
- 4 celery ribs, chopped
- 1 tbsp smoked paprika
- 1 tsp ground turmeric
- 1 1/4 cups split peas
- 5 1/2 cups water
- 2 medium yellow potatoes, peeled, chopped into cubes
- salt and black pepper to taste
- juice of 1 medium lemon
- fresh chives, chopped
Heat olive oil in a large pot. Saute onions for 2 minutes. Add carrots and celery. Saute until vegetables start to brown, about 7-10 minutes. Add smoked paprika and turmeric. Mix everything well and saute for 1 minute. Add split peas and water. Bring pot to a boil. Reduce heat to medium and simmer for 20 minutes. Add potatoes. Simmer for 25 more minutes or until peas are soft. Season to taste. Remove from heat.
Transfer half of soup mixture to blender and puree until smooth. Transfer back to pot. Stir everyting together. Add lemon juice.
Sprinkle with fresh chives and serve with rye bread. Enjoy!