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Freemans Restaurant located on the Lower East Side in New York City is a rustic American style restaurant that is known for their fantastic food. The split pea soup is always a good choice and is easy to make at home. This thick soup has hints of smokiness from the bacon and light fragrances of fresh thyme. This soup freezes well so be sure to save any leftovers.
1 pound slab bacon in 1/4-inch-thick slices
1 large onion, chopped
1 carrot, chopped
1 stalk celery, chopped
1 head garlic, cloves peeled and sliced thin
Salt and black pepper
1 pound dried green split peas, rinsed and picked over
4 bay leaves
3 quarts chicken stock
1/2 bunch fresh thyme leaves, stripped from stems.
Dice bacon into 1/4-inch cubes. Place in a heavy 6-quart pot overmedium-low heat. Cook until fat is rendered and translucent. Add onion, carrot, celery and garlic. Cook until onion and garlic are soft and translucent. Season with salt and pepper.
Add split peas, stir to coat with fat, and add bay leaves and stock. Increase heat and bring to a boil. Reduce heat so soup simmers. Skim foam that rises to the surface for about 10 minutes,
until no more appears. Add thyme leaves. Simmer uncovered about 1 hour or longer, until peas are soft and starting to fall apart.
Remove soup from heat. Add salt and pepper to taste. Purée soup in a food processor in several batches, short of perfect smoothness; you should be able to spoon up some texture. Reheat soup, skimming off any foam. Stir from the bottom to mix well, then ladle into bowls and serve.
Makes 10 to 12 servings.
Source: New York Times