Tuesday, 11 June 2013

Pea and Ham Soup

I probably should start this with a bit of an apology, as it's been a while since my last post. To be honest, I didn't realise people kept track of the blog, but it's nice that you do and I feel suitably told off for leaving it so long.

See thing's have been a bit funny recently. I've made a decision that will change the future as I know it and I'm feeling rather pleased and excited about it all. I've also been feeling incredibly self-indulgent. I've cleaned the flat, I've tried to cook as much as humanely possible, I've started reading and I've even painted my toenails. With all this, poor old Feast and Glory has been pushed to one side, but it's only been a month and I'm back. I even have some ideas for improvements, so there may be some changes in the future. I fancy a new look and I want Feast and Glory to look a bit more professional... so, as they say... Watch this space!

In the meantime I wanted to share a recipe with you. I'm currently trying to shop on a budget of £30 a week which includes breakfast, lunch and dinner. It does not include booze, cleaning products or meals out (of which there are probably around three a week). It's not a fixed figure, if I need to go over it one week, that's fine, it's just a little challenge I've set myself because I could do with saving some pennies and I find that living on this kind of budget encourages me to cook more. And, it's going quite well. We've had a lot of vegetable based dishes and I think a vegetable curry is my current favourite cheap, but healthy, meal, but there's also room in the budget for fish and meat. And remember that we are still indulging when eating out, so it really isn't all that bad at all.

This week's top budget meal is the pea and ham soup. I've been a fan of ham hocks since I first discovered them when I started this blog back in 2010 and I've wanted to do a pea and ham soup for some time, just never got round to it. With hocks being £1.89 and split peas being £1 for 400g at Castle Market, it was inevitable that I would be making it at some point soon.

I used this recipe which was incredibly easy. The only change I made was that I didn't soak the peas overnight (I forgot), but they were soft and yielding after the two and a half hours of cooking, so I wouldn't bother soaking next time either. The end result was pretty damn tasty; as good as any other pea and ham soup I've had and I was especially pleased to get 4 servings out of it, plus extra ham for a pea and ham risotto that I plan on making tomorrow. Next time I will add more split peas, maybe the whole 400g pack as I prefer a thicker soup. I also won't blend all the peas as I would like some kept whole to add texture.

So, what's your favourite soup recipe?


  1. French Onion, now that's the stuff in soup form right there.

  2. On a side note re value. I live with a vegetarian but she sometimes has nights away whereupon I can indulge. On Sunday I had the option of a whole chicken or a huge chunk of rib-eye. I paid £7.50 for a grain fed chicken from Chris Beech's in Walkley, about the same price I would have paid for a huge rib-eye. The steak would have done one meal....the chicken just keeps giving. I did a roast on sunday, I've had three lunchtime chicken sandwiches, tonight I did a leftover chicken, leek and mushroom pie. A portion of the filling went into the freezer and there's enough pie left over for two more lunches. All that from one bird, and I didn't even boil the bones!!

  3. Gary - I've never liked French onion myself, although I do wonder whether I've never had a 'good' one. I think I'm gonna try making my own - give it one more chance.

    Saul - Thanks for the chicken tip. I'm currently wondering what to have this weekend. I have a tenner and chicken did cross my mind. Roast dinner followed by sandwiches, salads and a risotto would be my plan!