The first time I ever tried this soup was at a sugar shack in St. Eustache just outside of Montreal. If you happen to visit Montreal in the early spring make sure to frequent a traditional Québécois “cabane à sucre”. Expect a grand feast amongst large tables of people, in the warmest setting with traditional music in the background. My favourite part however is maple syrup on a stick! I always try to find someone who doesn’t like it, so I can get their ticket and order two!
The traditional split pea soup is made with yellow split peas and ham. Its a recipe that dates back to the 17th century when European explorers came to Canada, they relied on hardy ingredients like dried peas. Fast forward to 2018, I make my version with dried green and yellow peas, and no ham! Its a vegetarian, gluten free soup that is absolutely satisfying.
As my grandpa calls it, make this “soup à la québécois” and enjoy it amongst family on the coldest of days. The best part? It is even better as tomorrows lunch!
225g green split peas
225g yellow split peas
2 tbs butter
1 large onion, finely chopped
1 large carrot, finely chopped
1 celery stalk, finely chopped
Enough chicken stock to cover the peas, + more, about 1000ml
1 pinch dried thyme
2 dried bay leafs
salt and pepper to taste
Rinse your peas under water and set aside. Heat some chicken broth and keep aside. In a large pot (that has a cover) turn the heat to medium high and add the butter. Once the pot is hot add the carrots, celery and onion. Stir constantly so nothing sticks and allow the vegetable to cook for about 3 minutes. Next add the peas, bay leafs and thyme, stir everything together. Then add the hot chicken stock so its covering the peas by an inch. Put the cover on and bring it to a simmer then turn the heat down to low. Let it cook for about an hour or until peas are tender. Split peas tend to absorb a lot of water as they cook, so check the soup often and add chicken stock as needed. Season with salt and pepper to taste and enjoy!