I love a bowl of hearty soup in the winter months, and split pea and ham is one of my all time favorites. As one of my goals for 2018, I'm trying to eat more vegetables in place of meat, so I set out to create a vegan version of this classic dish.
This soup is so creamy and flavorful that I actually surprised myself by not missing the ham hock at all. The nutritional yeast adds a wonderful savory richness, and the chunks of cabbage and corn create a very satisfying texture. The other benefit to this recipe is the fact that it's low in calories and high in fiber and protein!
- 1½ cups yellow split peas
- 8 cups vegetable stock
- 1 tbsp olive oil
- ¼ diced celery
- 1 cup diced onion
- 2 cloves garlic, finely chopped
- 1 bay leaf, fresh or dried
- 1 tbsp smoked paprika
- 1½ cups diced carrot
- 2 cups diced cabbage
- 1 cob corn, kernels sliced off
- 3 tbsp nutritional yeast
- Garnish with fresh herbs or celery leaf, and sliced red chili (optional)
- Rinse the split peas and remove any discolored pieces, then cover with water and soak overnight.
- Saute the garlic, onion and celery in olive oil over medium heat until soft, 5-7 minutes.
- Strain the split peas of any excess water from soaking overnight. Put split peas, stock, bay leaf, and garlic/onion/celery mixture into a large pot on high heat. When the mixture is boiling reduce the heat to low and allow to simmer for around 2 hours, or until the split peas are cooked to your liking.
- Add smoked paprika, salt and pepper to taste.
- Place half of the soup in a blender and puree, then return the pureed portion to the pot. Alternatively you could use an immersion blender to roughly puree the soup in the pot. I like a creamy texture with some of the lentils still whole so the soup has a chunky quality.
- Now add the carrot, corn and cabbage, and simmer for 25 minutes.
- To serve, mix through the nutritional yeast and garnish with a sprinkling of fresh herbs or celery leaf, cracked pepper, and red chili - if you like things spicy.
- This recipe doubles easily, and freezes well.
- You can change up the combination of vegetables depending on what you have in the fridge. Cauliflower florets, frozen peas, or diced potato would also be great additions.