BLUE LAKES SPLIT PEA SOUP WITH HAM SHANK
At the 8,136-foot elevation of Upper Blue Lake, it takes twice as long to cook the soup as it does at sea level. You need three to four hours to cook the peas into a thick soup. I took the photograph at the three-hour point.
1 pound green split peas
5 cups low sodium chicken stock
1 ham shank (about 8 ounces)
1 yellow onion, small dice
1 medium carrot, small dice
2 bay leaves
1 teaspoon dried thyme
Salt and ground black pepper, to taste
Wash and sort peas. Add to a 10-inch Dutch oven. Pour in stock and add ham shank, onion, carrot, bay leaves and thyme. Place Dutch oven over fire and heat to boiling. Adjust heat and simmer, covered, 1-1/2 to 3 hours or until peas are soft (depends on altitude). Remove bone and cut off meat and dice. Return meat to soup. Season with salt and pepper.
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