I was standing in front of the fridge, door wide open (checking over my shoulder, still half expecting my mother to yell at me to “close that bloody fridge door” from down the street), pondering what I would do for my next hammy adventure as I stared longingly and wantingly at the leftover ham like I was staring at my first ever vista of bare boobie glory. Then the thought entered my head that it would be really nice to have a pot of my Nana’s pea and ham soup with this limb of smoky porcine goodness but alas, the weather would not accommodate these desires as it is but a mad man with a hat full of pussy cats and dirty trousers who would cook a meal of hearty pea and ham soup during the peak of an Australian summer.
And then it happened.
It started raining and winding like it was the middle of fricking winter. I kid you not – it was cold and it was wet. Too funny. Nice little joke Jesus is playing on all the tourists who have flocked to the Northern Rivers to soak up the glory of a sun drenched Christmas. Now they can settle for just drenched and/or soaking wet…
Not being the type of man to look a gift horse in the mouth, or even get close enough to any horse, gift or not, to feel it’s warm horsey breath as I peer at it’s hairy tongue, I grasped the opportunity like the old man in the pervy cinema grasps himself, and had a pot of my Nana Rose’s pea and ham soup on the stove in record time.
NANA ROSE’S PEA & HAM SOUP (serves 4)
A couple of handfuls of chopped leftover ham, or the ham hock is the best if you still have it
1 cup yellow split peas
1 brown onion, diced
1 large carrot, diced
• Get ready to be blown away by the simplicity of this
• In a pot, sweat off onion and carrot for a minute or two, until they are just starting to soften
• Add ham hock and 1.5lt of h20
• On a very low heat so it’s just ticking over, cook with the lid slightly ajar for a couple of hours
• Add split peas and cook for another 40-ish minutes
• The split peas should now look like someone has pureed them for you while you were not looking. If they don’t cook it for a little longer. If it needs a bit more moisture, add a bit more water
• Pull them ham hock out and shred the meat off the bone while it’s still piping hot so your kids can laugh at you like we would laugh at my mum and nana when they would do it
• Check the seasoning
• Eat just like you would eat any soup – with a big fat pie of buttered bread