Hearty Split Pea Soup

Well, to say that we had a blizzard in New York City would be an understatement. Most subway lines have suspended service, and the streets are completely covered in snow. All of the cars on my block are buried, and the sidewalks have at least a foot and a half of snow on them. I watched car after car get stuck in the snow outside of my building last night and early this morning. I had a hard time sleeping, not only because I could hear the people outside pushing their cars out of the snow, but because I was worried about being able to get into work today. I woke up at 4 AM to check the subway service, and of course, all of the lines near my apartment are suspended. I went back to bed and woke up again at 5 AM, showered and got ready for work, and still, none of the lines were running. I spent an hour and a half trying to find a car company that had a car available to get me from Queens to Midtown Manhattan, but no such luck. I couldn’t even find a car company that had cars on the road, and it’s tough to get a cab in my area because it is so residential. It is now 7 AM, and I’m sitting on my couch, hoping that one of the car companies will call me back so I can get to work. This is what I get for moving to the East coast, right? Oh well. It’s worth it, except on days like today. At least I’m lucky enough to be inside of a warm apartment!

Now, I didn’t make a ham for Christmas, but we did have a leftover meaty ham bone from when Kramer and I made tamales a few weeks ago. I froze the ham bone, figuring that I would use it for something at a later date, but I wasn’t quite sure what. Kramer’s sister, Rachel, invited us over on Christmas Day for a Festivus-type celebration of sorts, and I wanted to bring something over. The problem with bringing food over to people’s homes in the city is that, without a car, you need to make sure that you’re bringing something that can be transported easily. Soup definitely falls into that category (for example, a few weeks ago I made my Vegan Carrot and Parsnip soup to work for a pot luck) because you can just throw it in a large Tupperware container and it reheats very easily. Rachel was making a glazed ham, so Kramer and I thought that the more ham (and bacon, of course), the merrier! Hence the split pea soup. I had never had a split pea soup using shallots and garlic; I usually use carrots and onions, but I wanted to try something different, so I did this and really liked the result. I don’t think that you can ever have too much garlic, and the savory shallots elevated this typical soup into something more, especially alongside white wine and a pinch of nutmeg, which I have been adding to a lot of my soups lately. It’s still a simple, rustic soup, though, which the pickiest eaters would even enjoy. This soup is an excellent way to use up any leftover ham from the holidays, and it will make your home smell wonderful as it simmers away on the stove.

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