Easter’s right around the corner.
Chances are if you celebrate Easter, there’s probably a ham in your future. Right? And hopefully it’ll be a big bone-in one that’ll be sitting on your dinner table.
Why? I just can’t help but get excited about what’s left after the meal’s over – the ham bone. Even though spring has sprung, soups on! Why you ask? That ham bone is perfect to make split pea soup.
Spilt pea soups conquers up childhood memories of eating Campbell’s soup. For some reason, although I never really liked peas as a kid, I loved the taste of this soup. But I think by now, we all know canned soup is super high in sodium. Consuming high sodium foods on a consistent basis can increase your risk of high-blood pressure. Even those so-called “low sodium” versions can be pretty high in sodium and quite honestly pretty tasteless. So why not take matters into your hands and make your own version – or my version 🙂
Not only do I love the taste of split pea soup – I love the nutritional value. Just one cup of split peas provides more than half your daily fiber intake – one cup! So that means, this soup will help keep you full. In addition, split peas are a good source of protein and many vitamins and minerals.
Okay, hold on. What about that ham bone? I mean, let’s talk about the elephant in the room. Isn’t ham high in sodium too? Well, yes – yes it is. But remember, you’re in control. Spilt peas are virtually sodium free. And use no-sodium stock (or make your own). Chances are the ham bone will add so much flavor that you won’t need to add additional salt. And eat in moderation. That means don’t eat the entire pot in one sitting (oh but you may be tempted!). Seriously, though. When foods are high in fiber, you get full faster. So trust me – a cup goes a long way. And lastly, if you’re watching your sodium intake in other ways – then you probably don’t have too much to worry about. Remember it’s not about one food, it’s about the whole picture.
So when you’re clearing the dinner table, don’t forget to save that ham bone! I think I see split pea soup in your future.
What do you do with your leftover ham bone?
- 1 ham bone with leftover meat attached
- 2 cups split green peas
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- 1 onions, diced
- 3 celery stalks, diced
- 3 carrots, diced
- 3 garlic cloves, minced
- 2 teaspoons thyme
- 1 bay leaf
- 7-8 cups no-sodium vegetable stock (or water)
- pepper to taste
- Heat large stock pot, then add olive oil.
- Add onion, celery and carrots. Let cook for a minute.
- Add ham bone.
- Rinse split peas then add to pot with garlic, thyme and bay leaf.
- Stir and let cook for another couple minutes. Add 7 cups of stock or water.
- Bring to boil, then turn heat down, cover and let simmer for about 40 minutes, until peas break down.
- Check on every once in awhile and stir to break the ham off the ham hock. Add more water if mixture is too thick.
- Season pepper to taste.
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