I was trying to figure out a way to make this usually rich soup as flavorful as possible without the ham and oil that's associated with it. This soup turned out even better than I imagined and I can't wait for the next bowl.
8 carrots peeled and sliced into half inch thick circles
4 ribs of celery diced into quarter inch pieces
1 onion diced (it's about a cup to a cup and a half)
1/2 cup of brandy
2 Tbl garlic (finely diced)
1 tsp turmeric
1 tsp white pepper
1 tsp dried thyme
1 1/2 Tbl Better Than Bouillon No Beef Base
8 cups Roasted Vegetable Stock
1/4 cup apple cider vinegar
4 cups water
2 cups split peas that have been rinsed (make sure you look for anything other than peas, like stones)
4 potatoes cleaned and diced
1 tsp Smoked Salt (optional, but I received a bunch of flavored salts for Christmas and one was hickory Smoked, you can use regular sea salt)
1/4 tsp liquid smoke
3 cups shredded brussel sprouts
Heat a stock pot. To the pot add the carrots, celery and onion. Keep moving them around so they brown but don't burn. You may add water if they are sticking too much. After about 7 minutes sauteing, remove the pot from the heat and add the brandy. Return to the heat and stir the mirepoix continuously until the brandy cooks out. Now add the garlic and stir it around a bit. Add all of the roasted vegetable stock, vinegar, turmeric, white pepper, and split peas. Cook covered for about 45 minutes. Add the potatoes, bouillon, salt and liquid smoke. Look at the inside of the pan and gauge where the original stock line was before it reduced. You want to keep the liquid level at the original level so add water from the remaining 4 cups in order to achieve this. Continue cooking covered for another half hour and then add the brussel sprouts. The soup is ready when the peas are soft. Check for salt at this point and add more if you feel it needs it.
*Note: Once the Soup is done and before you add the shredded brussel sprouts, you can blend everything together using a Cuisinart, immersion blender, Vita Mix or any other blender to get the same consistency as Split Pea soup. Either way, it's delicious.
I served this with crusty whole wheat sourdough, my Cream Cheeze to which I added fresh lemon juice and red wine vinegar. Sprinkled on the bread was Alderwood Smoked Salt. I'm really having fun with the different salts. The salt is more intense in these so added benefit is you use less and get more flavor.