Cafe Society

Cooking with Pete: Split pea soup

Marczyk and Barbara Macfarlane do not leave their work behind when they leave Marczyk Fine Foods and head for their great old Denver house with the big, new kitchen. They often bring some of their market's choicest ingredients home with them, and cook up a feast.

"Eternity is a ham and two people," says Barb, quoting an old saying from the days when hams were the size of states and it took whole villages -- not two people -- to fork their way through the pork. But if you've got any piggy leftovers from Easter dinner, then Barb and Pete recommend whipping up a batch of split pea soup. "It's smoky, packed full of good stuff and delicious," raves Barb. And, she says, "you can always float some wieners in it if you've got kids that are picky about peas."

Split Pea Soup


1 cup yellow onion, peeled and chopped 1 cup carrots, peeled and chopped 1 teaspoon vegetable oil 1 pound dried split peas, rinsed and picked through 4 cups ham stock (recipe is below) Salt and pepper to taste

Ham Stock

1 leftover bone-in ham 4 cloves garlic, peeled 1 bay leaf


1. Cut as much meat off the bone as you can, and shred or dice it. 2. Place the bone and all the fatty pig bits in a large stock pan. 3. And garlic and bay leaf. 4. Submerge the bone completely with cold water. 5. Bring the stock to a boil, and then simmer for at least six hours. 6. Cool, skim off the fat, and drain through a colander into another pan. 7. Return the pot to the stove, add the vegetable oil, onions and carrots and sauté for five minutes over medium heat. 8. Add split peas, ham stock and chopped/shredded ham. 9. Season with salt and pepper. 10.Partially cover, and cook, stirring occasionally, for about two hours, or until the peas have fallen apart and only green liquid remains. You may need to add some water as the soup continues to cook. 11. Remove soup from heat, and let stand so it will thicken. 12. If necessary, heat through to serve.

For more from Pete, Barbara and Marczyk Fine Foods, visit the market website. And be sure to check out Who's Drinking with Pete.
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Lori Midson
Contact: Lori Midson