Prep 30 mins
Cook 2 hrs
- 6 slices bacon, cut into 1/2-inch pieces
- 1 large white onion, finely chopped
- 1 stalk celery, finely chopped
- 1 garlic clove, minced
- 1 tablespoon tomato paste
- 1 lb split peas, rinsed
- 1 1⁄2 teaspoons salt
- 2 sprigs fresh thyme
- 1 bay leaf
- 1⁄2 teaspoon black pepper
- sour cream, for serving
- chopped fresh parsley, for garnish
- In a large pot, cook the bacon over med-high heat until crisp, 5-7 minutes.
- Drain the bacon on a paper towel-lined plate, then crumble it up.
- Add the onion, celery, and garlic to the pot.
- Cook, stirring, until tender, about 5 minutes.
- Stir in the tomato paste until blended inches.
- Stir in the split peas, 8 cups water, the salt, thyme, and bay leaf.
- Bring to a boil.
- Reduce to a gentle simmer and cook until the peas have completely fallen apart and the soup thickens, 1 1/2-2 hours.
- Keep an eye on the soup and add more water if the soup thickens too much while cooking.
- Discard the bay leaf and season the soup with black pepper.
- Serve the soup topped with the crumbled bacon, a hearty dollop of sour cream, and a pretty sprinkling of parsley.