But with all the rich food, and well, all the food that I've been making and eating and serving, I wanted a little comfort food.
So I made some Gul Ærtesuppe, my take on my mom's recipe for Split Pea soup.
Comfort food to the max.
I had a hambone from the ham I made for Christmas Eve, and decided to go ahead and simmer it in my crock pot for a few hours.
After it had simmered away, without any additions, just the water, I took it out, strained the soup, and placed the soup liquid into another pot.
I got about 10 cups of ham juice. I'm so proud of myself, I actually measured it.
I put yellow split peas into the broth and let it simmer until the peas were soft. While they were simmering away, I pulled a celery root aka celeriac, out of the fridge, peeled it, and cut it into fine dice. I did the same with 4 small carrots and two shallots.
One quick note about Celery Root or Celeriac. See the picture above, this is a piece of the peel from the Celeriac.
I forgot to take a picture of the root before I started cutting the peel off. It really doesn't look like something you would want to eat. But if you can get past the exterior, the interior smells so wonderfully of celery. It's kind of a concentrated celery flavour. The interior should be a milky white, but the one I had was a little, well, almost past its prime, but still edible.
Added them all into the broth and peas and then put in a small bunch of thyme from the plant which resides on my office windowsill, and needs to be repotted, but it will have to wait. I also added a bay leaf to the soup. I hadn't tasted the soup yet at that point, but decided to give it a taste and then I added about 1/2 teaspoon salt, and a few grinds of fresh black pepper.
I simmered the soup for about another half hour, until the veggies were tender and then fished out the thyme and bay leaf.
Then I had fun. I pulled out my immersion blender and blended it into a lovely creamy soup. You can use a potato masher for this as well, or just leave the veggies whole. Any way you want to eat this is just fine. But I like having a mug of soup that I can sip on while I'm working.
10 cups ham broth or low sodium chicken stock
1 1/2 -2 cups Split Yellow Peas
1 celery root, or 3 stalks celery, chopped or diced
4 small carrots,diced
1-2 shallots, diced (can also use the white parts of 2 leeks here, rinsed and diced or sliced)
1 small bunch fresh thyme or 1/2 teaspoon dried thyme
1 bay leaf
salt and pepper to taste.
1/2 teaspoon white or wine vinegar (opt.)
Place the broth or stock into a large pot, add the thyme, bay leaf and yellow split peas. Simmer until the peas are tender and then add the vegetables, continue to cook until the vegetables are cooked through. Stir it a couple of times throughout the cooking process, and when the vegetables are tender and cooked through, you can either mix it up with an immersion blender or mash the vegetables and peas together or just eat it as is. My dad always added a soup spoon of vinegar to his soup, and I do the same. The vinegar adds a nice piquant note to the soup, and also thickens it up.
My soup came out really thick, but I like it thick. If it's too thick for your taste, go ahead and thin it out with a little water. Serve with a little ham on the side if you like, or do like me, a couple slices of my nice home made rye bread.
Lunch or dinner fit for a Dane.
Well for this Dane at least.