I waited many years to cook this lamb – yellow split peas soup or any lamb at all. I feel the need to catch up on the lamb and this soup is a great start!
It’s funny, weird and somehow interesting, how we implement those parental food-related behaviors. My mom makes a face like having dirt in her mouth, even smelling bananas. But I love them! On the other side, she also has the same strong feelings about lamb.
Growing up I thought lamb meat is ugly and has to be avoided because I was told so. Until our lovely Greek neighbors invited me to their big fat Greek Easter Sunday and a lamb on a spit was the main attraction. This was one of those Eureka experiences that changed my life. Ever since lamb grew on me and I find myself cooking it more often. I am always looking for new recipes with lamb, please share your favorite one in the comments!
lamb – yellow split peas soup
The split peas are cooked until they break down into a thick, creamy and hearty soup. I prefer them slightly overcooked until they are falling apart. If you are not into lamb (I can totally relate to that), use your leftover holiday ham and bone or smoked ham hock. Meaty portobello mushrooms are a great vegetarian option. On the flavor side, if you feel like it could use a little more kick, add your favorite curry powder.
- 1 tablespoons olive oil or ghee
- 2 garlic cloves, minced
- 1 ½ tablespoons ginger, minced
- 1 ½ teaspoons ground cumin
- 1 teaspoons chili powder
- 1 teaspoons ground fennel seeds
- ½ pound ground lamb
- 1 liter / 4⅓ cups water
- 250 g / 8.8 oz. yellow split peas
- 3-4 handful (or more if you like) fresh spinach, chopped
- sea salt and fresh ground black pepper to taste
- 3 green onions, thinly sliced
- 3 jalapeno peppers, seeds and ribs removed, thinly sliced
- Heat oil in a large Dutch oven over medium-high heat. Add garlic, ginger, cumin, chili powder, and fennel and sauté 2 minutes until fragrant.
- Place the ground lamb in the Dutch oven and cook over medium-high heat until browned. Use a wooden spoon to break up the meat as it cooks.
- Add water, scraping pan to loosen browned bits.
- Rinse yellow split peas until water runs clear. Stir in and bring to a boil. Reduce heat, and simmer 1 hour until the peas fall into a puree on their own.
- Towards the end of cooking time, season with salt and black pepper to taste. Serve with green onion and jalapeno peppers.