Like American split pea soup, Polish split pea soup or zupa grochowka makes use of a leftover ham bone. This version differs slightly in that it's left chunky and potatoes, bacon and carrots are added.
Since ham is omnipresent on Polish tables, especially for major holidays, this soup is very common. If you can't make the soup right away, freeze the bone for when the spirit moves you. Serve with Polish rye bread and butter.
Makes 6 servings
Prep Time: 15 minutes
Cook Time: 1 hour
Total Time: 1 hour, 15 minutes
- 3 slices bacon, cut in half
- 1 finely chopped garlic clove
- 1 large onion, chopped
- 3 celery stalks, trimmed and cut into 1/2-inch pieces
- 3 large carrots, peeled and cut into 1/2-inch pieces
- 8 cups water
- 1 (1-pound) bag green or yellow split peas, rinsed
- 1 meaty ham bone
- 1 bay leaf
- 1 cup chopped ham
- 2 large potatoes, peeled and cut into 1-inch pieces
- Salt and pepper to taste
- In a large stock pot, fry bacon until fully cooked. Remove, crumble when cool and set aside. Add garic, onion, celery and carrots to bacon grease in pot and saute over medium heat until limp.
- Add water, peas, ham bone and bay leaf. Bring to a boil, skimming any foam that rises to the top. Add the chopped ham, potatoes, crumbled bacon, salt and pepper to taste, and return to a boil. Reduce to a simmer, cover and cook on low for 1 hour or until peas have completely broken down, stirring frequently to avoid scorching.
- Serve with rye bread and butter. The soup freezes well.