Let It Snow…

Let It Snow...

It started Thursday evening….freezing rain, then sleet and by Saturday morning we had about 10 inches of powdery snow. Our family was happy to be “snowed in” together for 4 days! Caston (pictured) was trilled to miss school and play, play, play…

Holiday baking with the kids, wrapping Christmas gifts, running through the snow and snow angels, hide and seek, movies and hot cocoa is how we spent our days together.

And…lots of wine. I mean nothing warms you up faster than a good glass of Pinot Noir.

And to go along with that wine, warm up with my Purple Hull Pea Soup. We fixed this on Thursday evening, in preparation of the big winter storm.

This recipe was a staple meal that my mother cooked quite often and was a great meal that lasts for days.

The purple hulls were grown in our very large family garden that our entire family cared for and harvested each year. My mom would freeze a large amount of peas so that we would have plenty to last us until the next gardening season.

My husband had never had purple hulls until a couple years ago when my mother had made a pot while we were visiting my folks. He was hesitant to try them at first, but my mother has a way to get anyone to try anything once.

Since that first taste, he was an instant fan.

Purple hull’s are similar to Black Eyed Peas, but have double the flavor. Plus, there is something magical that happens when you combine smoked ham hocks and purple hulls.

Be sure to soak the peas for about an hour or so if you are using dry beans. If you don’t have any ham hocks on hand throw in some salted pork or bacon stripes. But you have to use bacon grease….it’s one of the important ingredients to making purple hulls “oh so good!”

My Mother’s Purple Hull Peas
4 cups shelled purple hull peas
1 – large hunk of smoked ham hocks or some bacon stripes
3 cloves of minced garlic or garlic powder
1 onion chopped
4 cups chicken broth
Throw in some dried parsley flakes
Enough bacon grease to cover the bottom of the pot
Salt, to taste
Black or White Pepper, to taste

Sauté the onions until they are lightly browned from the bacon grease, add garlic and sauté.. Add the hocks and peas – cover with broth and water (enough to cover the peas) and boil for a couple hours. Cut away all the meat and return the meat back to the pot. If using bacon, cooke your bacon before the onions and then add the bacon back into the pot after cooking the peas for a couple hours. Stir occasionally.  Add parsley and seasonings. Simmer for another couple hours.

Note: You will probably have to add water occasionally to the pot during the cooking process. Peas are done when they are soft and tender.

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