I know you know how it is. You look in the fridge and see half a cauliflower here, half a bunch of kale there, maybe a few lonely carrots or turnips hiding beneath the kale at the bottom of the drawer. And a new CSA box is due in a day or two.
Times like this call for a kitchen sink recipe. What I mean by that, is, of course, one that can accommodate whatever must be used in the fridge. I happened to be browsing my copy of Mark Bittman’s “How to Cook Everything Vegetarian” when I saw a recipe for an extremely basic Caribbean soup with yellow split peas and ended with a splash of lime. His recipe was so simple though, that I don’t think it had any vegetables in it. With a cold front coming in, I took that as my inspiration, and improvised from there.
Soups are often best when there are different textures making up the whole. I used cauliflower, carrots, kale and turnips in mine, which provided a great contrast. But feel free to use whatever you have on hand. The lime juice really adds that necessary zing at the end.
Time-saving tip: Prep your onions, garlic, ginger, and Serrano first. After the peas and stock are in, you will have enough time to prep the rest of the veggies.
Kitchen Sink Yellow Split Pea Soup
A neutral oil like grape seed or canola
2 onions, diced
4 cloves garlic, chopped
1 dried Serrano chile, deseeded and chopped finely (I happened to have one lying around from a CSA box months ago. If you are not a spicy person, omit this. If you are a super-spicy person, use the seeds, too.)
3 Tbs ginger, chopped
2 cups yellow split peas, rinsed
8 cups veggie broth
Whatever mixed veggies you want to get rid of, cut into chunks, strips, etc.
Heat a tablespoon or two of oil in a soup pot. Add the chopped onions and cook for 5 to 10 minutes, stirring, until clear. Add the garlic, ginger and Serrano and cook an additional 3 minutes. Stir frequently to prevent sticking.
Add the stock and split peas. Bring to a boil, lower heat, cover and cook for 25 minutes, stirring every once in awhile. After 25 minutes have passed, add your veggies. In another 20 minutes, the peas should all be broken down, and the veggies should be soft. Add salt to taste. Ladle into a soup bowl, squeeze a bit of lime juice over the bowl and enjoy.