split pea & ham soup

I made this again last night and loved it so much I had to repost it!  Winter is almost over...  so I am getting my fill of soups while I can!  And nothing beats a steaming bowl of split pea soup and a big chunk of sourdough bread!

Split Pea & Ham Soup Recipe

2 tablespoons olive oil
1 large onion, chopped
2 carrots, chopped
2 celery stalks, chopped
2 cloves garlic, minced
2 small potatoes, diced
1 large ham hock
2 bay leaves
4 cups chicken stock
6-8 cups water
salt & pepper
crushed red pepper flakes
1/2 pound ham, diced
1 pound split peas

In a large stockpot, saute the onions, carrots and celery in olive oil until they begin to brown. Season with salt & pepper. Add the garlic and saute for a few seconds. Add in the ham hock, bay leaves, potatoes, stock and water.

Bring to a boil, then reduce heat to low, cover and simmer for 2-3 hours. Remove the ham hock, shred the meat and return it to the pot. Taste the broth and season with salt & pepper and red pepper flakes.

Add the split peas and the chopped ham and simmer - uncovered - about 1 hour, until the peas are dissolved and the soup is thickened. Remove the bay leaves, and serve with crusty warm bread!

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