December 15, 2010
Thank you all so much for your kind words regarding our engagement, Steve and I are very excited! I have been swept up in the excitement of wedding planning and the holidays, and have been neglecting the blog. That's not to say that I haven't been cooking! Most of my meals lately have been previously blogged recipes, such as Pumpkin Black Bean Chili, Butternut Rancheros, and White Chili with Tomatillos and Roasted Mushrooms, all worthy repeats I might add!
This weekend I made another old favorite, Split Pea and Barley Soup, but I decided to give the recipe a makeover. And what a makeover it was! Armed with ground chipotle and liquid smoke, I transformed my classic split pea into something totally new. If you are looking for a hearty, warming soup with a kick, this one is for you. Both standard stove top and pressure cooker methods provided below.
Smoky Chipotle Split Pea and Barley Soup
1-1/2 cups green split peas, rinsed and picked over
1/3 cup pearled barley
1 yellow onion, diced
4 cloves of garlic, minced
1 large or 2 small carrots, peeled and sliced
2 ribs of celery, sliced
10 cups water
4 not chick'n bouillon (or sub your preferred bouillon)
2 tsp thyme
3/4 tsp ground chipotle pepper (or try canned, diced. Start with 1/2 a chipotle pepper and adjust)
1/2 tsp ground cumin
1/2 tsp smoked paprika
1 bay leaf
1/2 tsp liquid smoke
1 tbsp lime juice
Amazing Homemade Vegan Bacon
vegan sour cream
Stove top method: Heat 1/4 cup water in a large pot and saute onion and garlic until the onion is translucent. Stir in thyme, chipotle pepper, cumin, smoked paprika, cayenne, and bay leaf, and saute for 1 minute stirring constantly.
Add 10 cups of water, bouillon cubes, and peas. Turn up to high and bring to a boil. Reduce heat to medium and partially cover. Simmer for 1 hour, stirring occasionally.
After 1 hour of simmering the peas should be starting to break down a bit. Add in the barley, carrots, and celery and continue simmering (partially covered) for 45 minutes to an hour, until the peas have completely broken down. If the soup starts to thicken too much add extra water 1 cup at a time as needed, maintaining the thickness that you prefer.
Once the peas have completely broken down, and the barley, carrots, and celery are tender, remove from heat. Remove bay leaf and stir in liquid smoke and lime juice. Taste and season with salt and pepper if desired. Serve hot, topped with a tablespoon of vegan sour cream and a slice of vegan bacon, fried and chopped.
Pressure cooker method: Put 6 cups of water, split peas, and barley into the pressure cooker. Cook at high pressure for 6 minutes and allow pressure to come down naturally.
While the pressure cooker is doing its thing, heat 1/4 cup water is a large pot. Saute onion and garlic until the onion is translucent. Stir in thyme, chipotle pepper, cumin, smoked paprika, cayenne, and bay leaf, and saute for 1 minute stirring constantly. Add 4 cups of water, bouillon cubes, carrots, and celery and turn up heat to bring to a boil. Reduce heat to simmer and partially cover. Simmer 30 minutes or until carrots and celery are tender. By this time the pressure cooker should be done releasing the pressure. Empty the contents of the pressure cooker into the other pot and stir to combine. Remove bay leaf, stir in liquid smoke, lime juice, and water if needed to reach the desired thickness. Taste and season with salt and pepper if desired. Serve hot, topped with a tablespoon of vegan sour cream and a slice of vegan bacon, fried and chopped.
(A third option is to cook everything in the pressure cooker. The only downside is that the carrots and celery may be overcooked. To combat this slice them thicker. Start by sauteing the onion and garlic in the cooker for 5 minutes, then add all of the other ingredients less that liquid smoke and lime juice, and cook for 6 minutes at high pressure, and allow the pressure to come down naturally. Stir in the liquid smoke and lime juice at the end).
Check out my new ornaments!
A wee candy cane monster compliments of Panda With Cookie. This etsy shop offers monsters in all sizes, tofu pirates, adorable onesies, and more. This is not my first Panda original, you may remember the tofu pirate apron I nabbed earlier this year. Hooray for vegan crafters!
I am submitting the wee monster photo to the festive photo round of No Croutons Required. Entries accepted until Dec 20, voting opens the 21st at Tinned Tomatoes.
My other new ornament this year is one I bought in Tennessee the day that Steve proposed. I don't normally buy the clay personalized ornaments, but it seemed meant to be when I saw it!
My Christmas present to myself this year was a box of goodies from Pangea Vegan Store. I wanted to try several vegan products that I have not been able to find locally including vegan white chocolate chips, soy curls, parmazano, and dried soy creamer packets. I also decided to try out 2 gravy mixes, vegetable broth powder, and a few cheezly flavors (on sale $.99 each!). I was super impressed by how quickly my order arrived. I placed my order mid-morning, it shipped the same day and was on my doorstep 2 days later!
I am looking for suggestions of how to use these precious white chocolate chips and soy curls. What are you favorite uses?