So we have a mission lately to try and eat everything in our freezers, both in the top of the fridge and the giant deep freeze downstairs, in preparation for moving soon. It’s a big mission, and one we’ve taken to heart. All January and into February we’ve made lists of dinner ideas based on what we’ve got already, and we actually find it fun to choose an item each morning. Not to mention it takes the guess work out of the 5 o’clock “what’s for dinner?” routine.
What did I find?
One of the items in our freezer is a ham bone… I think it may have been from Easter last year… but that’s neither here nor there. Anyways, I went on the hunt because I knew we had a few split pea soup recipes kicking around. I decided to try the one from the Looneyspoons Collection, Shanks for the Memories. It intrigued me with its addition of balsamic vinegar at the end, and I tend to really like the recipes that these two crazy gals come up with! I’m a big fan of their other cookbooks too: Crazy Plates and Eat, Shrink & Be Merry!
What did I change?
First things I did was sub the lentils that the recipe calls for with more split peas. I had plenty, and a split pea soup can never have too many of the star ingredient…
I also boiled the ham bone for a lot longer than an hour. Typically we boil the heck out of our meat bones to make stock, so when I had a day to work from home, I stuck the frozen bone on the stove and let it simmer for a good 5 or 6 hours. I think it makes for more condensed and therefore tastier stock.
What did I learn?
Honestly, I’m not sure I learned anything particular from this recipe, aside from the fact that this recipe is easier than I assumed. I think that’s become a bit of a theme here… recipes seem daunting because they are so good and seem to take a long time, but the reality is that recipes like this are super simple. Heck there aren’t even that many veggies to chop for this one!
So I enjoyed the addition of the balsamic vinegar at the end – a unique twist for sure. But I did find that this recipe made for a thinner split pea soup than I’m used to. Next time, even more split peas!
Now, what else can I find in that freezer…