Our usual fare during Lent has become soup and bread suppers, since I started following the older Latin and current Eastern discipline of removing not only meat but also dairy and eggs from the menu during Lent. In a shocking concession to weakness, I have, after the first go at it 3 or 4 years ago, allowed oil (but not olive oil) in the kitchen during this season, but the flesh is weak.
For the past year and a half, I've been meeting on Monday nights, when my wife is working a late shift, with my organist friend Fred for supper and vespers. And last Fall we included a new companion, Robert, in our weekly meals and prayer. So, this week they got treated to a typical Lenten meal, Canadian Split Pea Soup with bread and salad. I cheated on the bread, and used a garlic cibatta loaf from the local supermarket, but the soup is home-made, from a recipe in the Horn of the Moon cookbook.
- 8 cups water
- 2 cups uncooked yellow split peas
- 1 tablespoon sunflower oil (or safflower, or canola)
- 4 large cloves garlic, minced
- 3/4 cup chopped onion (2 smallish onions)
- 3/4 cup sliced carrot (1 large carrot)
- 3/4 cup sliced celery
- 1 teaspoon dried thyme
- 1 cup chopped, unpeeled potato
- 1 cup chopped, peeled turnip or rutabaga (or double the potato)
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 1 teaspoon cider vinegar
- 1/8 teaspoon black pepper
- 1/4 cup chopped fresh parsley
Bring water to boil in a 4-quart soup pot. Add split peas, lower heat to a simmer, and cover loosely. Cook, stirring occasionally, for 1 hour, until split peas are tender.
Meanwhile, set a 10-inch fry pan over medium heat. Add oil and when hot, add the garlic, onions, carrots, celery, and thyme. Sauté until tender. Add sautéed vegetables, potato and turnip to the cooked peas; continue to simmer. Add the salt, vinegar, pepper, and parsley. Cook the souop 30 minutes more, covered, stirring occasionally, until the vegetables are tender and the peas have dissolved.