Sunday, March 30, 2008

Split Pea Soup

Off late I have been trying to eat healthy ...tell hubby dear that and he would respond by wondering when did I cook something that was unhealthy ..... Thanks to me his intake of favorites like fried food and sweets has become almost zero :-) .

Split peas or dried peas were used as a alternative for fresh peas long before technology gave us the convenience of using fresh peas whenever we felt like irrespective of the time of year. When we were kids I remember mom making aloo-matar and other dishes using these dried peas , we were not exactly crazy about dried peas back then. But now things have changed ever since I have read about the health benefits of having dried peas I have tried to incorporate them into our meal .

Dried peas can lower cholesterol and also manage blood sugar due to their high fibre content which prevents blood sugar levels from rising rapidly after a meal.Dried peas also provide good to excellent amounts of four important minerals, two B-vitamins, and protein--all with virtually no fat. In addition they also have isoflavones the consumption of which has been linked to reduced risk of certain types of cancers.

You can read more about the health benefits here

Well recently hubby was travelling and I was looking for recipe which was new and healthy .... I had soaked some dried peas without having any definite idea about how to use them, I didn't want to make the usual dal we make and so I thought of making a soup . I did some net surfing and came across a number of soup recipes ..... but almost all of them used some meat . I didn't feel like having meat and so decided to make a completely vegetarian soup . The results were great to say the least , the soup was filling and satisfying and I am definitely going to make it again.

Ingredients (serves 2 )

Dried peas - 1/2 cup

Carrot - 1 large chopped into large pieces

Onion - 1 large one

Coriander leaves and stalks - a fistful

Freshly ground black pepper - as per taste

Salt - as per taste

Water - 4 cups

Soak the dried peas for 4-6 hours . Cook the peas with chopped carrots, onion and the coriander stalks . Traditional recipes call for cooking the peas over a slow flame for 4-5 hours just letting it simmer at a low flame , but I just pressure cooked them with about 3 cups of water . I cooked it over medium flame till I got two whistles and then let it cool . Once cool separate the water and puree the peas, carrot and onion etc with just enough water . Mix the contents with the rest of the stock ( you can strain the mixture to separate the hard skin of the peas and the fibrous part of coriander stalks) . Again simmer the soup at a low flame till the desired consistency is achieved . Add salt and crushed pepper . The soup is ready to be served. Garnish with heavy cream , bread croutons and coriander leaves.

P.S. :-The non-veg lovers can add chicken sausages while cooking the peas , or at a later stage while simmering the soup. I tried it another time and it just adds to the flavor .


LG said...

I was looking for soup recipes and you published them in time. Thanks to you. I will open my new blender by making this soup :)


Good Luck ! LG.... Do let me know how it turned out ...

I will be publishing a lot of soup recipes in the near future as hubby is going to be travelling and I am planning to control my diet