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The most awesome Pea and Ham soup you can make Monday, 17/10/2011 by nik

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I'm afraid I tend to cook by instinct and taste, so what I don't have is a completely prescriptive recipe measured to the nearest gramme. ☺ If you need to follow a recipe like that, you need to look elsewhere. Otherwise, do what I do, and taste what you're making and judge what to use as you go along.

With that out the way, here's some of the best Pea and Ham soup you'll ever make.



  • Dried Peas - soaked (the quick variety usually take about two hours to soak)
  • Onions - about the same amount as you have peas
  • Turmeric - a couple of teaspoons - optional if you don't have it
  • Cumin seeds - again, optional - but if you have them, a teaspoon or so
  • Coriander leaf - fresh or dried - fresh is obviously best; add enough to make a difference but not to overpower
  • Chilli powder - as much or as little as you like
  • Black pepper - lots
  • Garlic - loads - at least several bulbs, maybe double
  • A teaspoon or two of English mustard
  • Ham, bacon or lardons; smoked or unsmoked whichever you like about 1 Quarter the amount of peas
  • Marigold swiss vegetable bouillon stock powder - seriously, this is the best stock you can get, use it in everything
  • Olive oil



Prepare the peas according to the packet (this usually means soak and rinse for a few hours).

Dice onions into small cubes if you haven't bought them pre-diced. Warm the pot with a few spoons of oil olive oil and start sauteing the onions. Also add the garlic, ham, and turmeric. Keep stirring and sauteing to start caramelising the onions. 

After about 5 minutes of good sizzling, add everything else (except the stock powder) and stir is together. I usually keep this going on a the heat for a minute or two before then adding boiling water. 

Reduce to a simmer and keep stirring. Stir in a few spoons of stock powder. Keep tasting and adding as required. Remember that over time and as it cools the soup will taste more salty, so don't go too mad, just keep tasting. But make sure you add enough. Leave to simmer for 30 - 40 minutes, but keep checking on it and tasting. Add more pepper if needed. 


Usually I part blend mine with a hand blender, just to remove any chunks (especially if you used lardons). Served, of course, with home made chunks of ciabatta bread.


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More about the  food category

My whole "food" section is inspired around the theme of "recipes for blokes". It has evolved as a result of my own need to stay alive.

What I've tried to do is come up with some recipes that are easy to make, but taste great. They're quick and easy because they make use of basic, reliable ingredients where I've replaced the "science" of following a strict recipe with (hopefully) something more creative and flexible.

[By the way, you should read these recipes in conjunction with my "basic ingredients" list.]

And of course, tasty food is a great way to impress a partner or your hungry dinner guests.

You'll also discover that I've tried to use healthy ingredients, and in particular avoiding the use of salt wherever possible.

In all my recipes the focus is not on the fine detail (probably what puts a lot of fellas off) but on the essence of the recipe. Experiment with the ingredients and find the quantities that suit you and your taste buds best. Once you are well practised it will come you'll be able to create your own recipes and mouthwatering dishes from a few leftover ingredients.

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