Photo: Oxmoor House
Total Time
1 Hour 15 Mins
Serves 7 (serving size: 1 cup)

Although a favorite across the nation, this dish was introduced to the U.S. by early English settlers. We've omitted the salty ham hock, but added smoked paprika for extra smoky flavor.

How to Make It

Step 1

Sort and wash split peas; drain.

Step 2

Remove roots, outer leaves, and tops from leeks, leaving 1/2 inch of dark leaves. Slice leek in half lengthwise; cut each half crosswise into thin slices. Rinse thoroughly with cold water.

Step 3

Cook bacon in a large heavy saucepan over medium-high heat until pieces begin to crisp. Add onion, celery, carrot, oil, and leek; reduce heat to medium, and cook 10 minutes, stirring occasionally. Add split peas, and cook 1 minute, stirring constantly. Add 7 cups water and next 6 ingredients (through bay leaf); bring to a boil over medium-high heat. Partially cover, reduce heat to medium-low, and simmer 45 minutes or until split peas are tender.

Step 4

Discard bay leaf. Stir in ham and smoked paprika; simmer 2 minutes or until ham is thoroughly heated.

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Ratings & Reviews

Not bad, but needs something else

April 16, 2015
I made this as written, but it seemed a little bland in flavor and needs more oomph to it.  I also used my immersion blender before adding the ham to puree the vegetables, leaving it somewhat chunky and then I added the ham and paprika. 

abluefront's Review

January 28, 2014
This recipe just sounded right to me. I was looking for something a little different than my normal pea soup and the addition of smoked paprika got me hooked. Long story short, I thought I had a bag of lentils and a bag of split peas, instead I had 2 bags of lentils. And I thought - why not I think it would be great. And it did not disappoint, even with the wrong legumes! I decided to saute the lentils for about 4-5 minutes instead since they need a little longer cook time and it worked out beautifully - simmered for 45 mins. I also omitted the bacon, didn't have any and, you know how it goes. I added the ham about 15 minutes before it was done, paprika last couple of minutes as indicated. I will try this with split peas too, but I will definitely add it to my lentil soup repertoire. If it's too thick, just add a bit more water before you add the ham. I don't normally rate recipes, since they are usually just a springboard - but enjoy reading them so thought I should give back.